HARRISBURG – Rep. Aaron Kaufer (R-Luzerne) is asking Pennsylvania Attorney General Josh Shapiro to intervene on behalf of millions of Pennsylvanians to stop the unfunded federal stormwater mandate and to request funding from the federal government.
“The federal Environmental Protection Agency overstepped its boundaries when it implemented its stormwater treatment mandate without providing funding to bring the directive to fruition,” Kaufer said. “Though the goals of the program are important, it has left property owners financially responsible for a bureaucratic program that was not funded by those who came up with the idea.”
Kaufer noted in a letter to Shapiro that the federal Unfunded Mandates Reform Act of 1995 (UMRA) prohibits programs, such as the stormwater treatment requirement, from being forced upon state and local governments without being funded by the federal government.
To meet the mandate, the Wyoming Valley Sewer Authority (WVSA) has imposed a fee on property owners in Kaufer’s district. Numerous municipalities in the Commonwealth are also considering imposing a fee on its residents to fund the federal mandate.
“Residents’ frustration toward the WVSA is misguided. The WVSA’s hands are tied when it comes to trying to meet this unfunded mandate, a position it never should have been put in,” Kaufer said. “I commend the authority for taking the approach of enlisting numerous municipalities to face the issue head on and ultimately save money for residents by banding together.”
Kaufer also plans to introduce a resolution in the House that urges Congress to provide additional funding for counties and municipalities to comply with stormwater requirements.
“I believe it is Attorney General Josh Shapiro’s responsibility to stand up for the interests of all Pennsylvanians and put an end to this inequitable and unlawful enforcement of the stormwater mandate. According to UMRA, enforcement requires funding,” Kaufer said.
A copy of the letter is attached
For more information about this topic, or any other state-related issue, contact Kaufer’s district office in Luzerne located at 161 Main St., by calling 570-283-1001. Information can also be found online at RepKaufer.com
Representative Aaron Kaufer
120th Legislative District
Pennsylvania House of Representatives
Media Contact: Greg Gross