Connecticut's Coastal Nonpoint Source Pollution Control Program – Legal Opinions

In developing coastal nonpoint source pollution control programs, states are required to describe (or adopt) the legal authorities they will use to ensure that management measures will be implemented and enforced. These "enforceable policies and mechanisms" may be state and local regulatory controls, and/or non-regulatory incentive programs combined with state enforcement authority.

States are also allowed to develop coastal nonpoint source pollution control program components that are based on voluntary or incentive-based programs and backed by state enforcement authority.  NOAA and EPA will approve those program components if the following is provided:

  • a legal opinion from the attorney general that such authorities can be used to prevent nonpoint pollution and require management measure implementation, as necessary;

  • a description of the voluntary or incentive-based programs, including the methods for tracking and evaluating those programs, the states will use to encourage implementation of the management measures; and

  • a description of the mechanism or process that links the implementing agency with the enforcement agency and a commitment to use the existing enforcement authorities where necessary.

Connecticut submitted legal opinions to NOAA and EPA from the Office of the Attorney General to certify that adequate legal authority exists within the State of Connecticut for the implementation and enforcement of the Agriculture management measures for confined animal facilities (both large and small units) and for nutrient management, the Chemical Control management measures for construction sites and at dams, and the Marina Stormwater runoff management measure. 

The Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection also provided the required description of the incentive-based programs that Connecticut will use to implement the management measures for which legal opinions/certifications were submitted, and the description of the link between the state’s implementing authority and enforcement authority, administered by the Department of Energy and Environmental Protection. 

Legal opinions:

Content Last Updated February 28, 2020