The Commission took the following actions at its Executive Committee Meeting on September 19, 2013:
HRPDC External Communications
Deputy Executive Director, Randy Keaton provided an overview of the newly crafted HRPDC External Communications Policy which addresses speaking with the media; social media use, both personally and professionally and FOIA issues.
Department of Housing & Community Development Annual Report
Mr. Keaton reviewed the components of the annual report to DHCD, highlighting the new ENVISION Hampton Roads effort; various studies of regional significance such as benchmarking, climate change and transportation; local cost savings provided by coordinated efforts; implementation; technical assistance; agency liaison services and GIS, to name a few.
Water/Wastewater Utility Rate Structure Report
Whitney Katchmark, Principal Water Resources Engineer, summarized the difficult position that water utilities are experiencing due to declining water demand and increasing treatment and transport costs. Of note, while regional population is on the rise, water demand has experienced a fairly sharp drop. Over time, the revenue gap will continue to increase. PDC staff will take the lead in a public outreach campaign to explain these important issues associated with providing clean, safe, reliable drinking water for human health and safety.
Regional Sewer Consolidation Study
Ms. Katchmark also presented a brief update on the status of the regional sewer consolidation study. The study was completed in August and provides localities with conclusions and recommendations regarding potential cost-savings from regional consolidation, as well as needed enhancements to governance and staffing to ensure success if localities decide to consolidate. Due to Consent Decree requirements, EPA must be notified of local decisions by the end of February 2014. The consolidation decision then also impacts the development of the Regional Wet Weather Management Plan and its submission deadline.
Mr. Ellis James, Norfolk, commended the Commissioners on beginning the regional conversation on water and wastewater rate structures. He also urged members to stay abreast of the West Nile virus situation, as well as a recent oceans report.
Minutes: The minutes of the July 18, 2013 HRPDC Quarterly Commission Meeting were approved as part of the consent agenda.
Treasurer’s Report: Approved as part of the consent agenda.
Regional Reviews: Approved as part of the consent agenda.
Other items approved under the Consent Agenda:
• askHRgreen.org Annual Report
• Water/Wastewater Utility Rate Structure Report
• Comments on Building Code Revisions
• HRPDC External Communications Policy
• FY 2012-13 Annual Report to DHCD
• Stormwater Regional Cooperation Summary
• Memorandum of Understanding with Hampton Roads Military and Federal Facilities Alliance (HRMFFA)
• Resolution for Day of Service
The December meeting has been tentatively cancelled. There being no further business, the meeting was adjourned.