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COUNTY LAUNCHES 1ST STORMWATER MANAGEMENT WEBSITE IN STATE The new website provides resources to local governments and the public with a focus on education

(Woodbury, NJ) - Gloucester County Freeholder Director Stephen M. Sweeney announced today that the county's new Stormwater Management Website has gone live. The site, www.gcstormwater.com, is the first website in the state that is devoted to Stormwater Management for both municipal officials and the public.

"Gloucester County has taken a progressive tact with Stormwater Management and we are the only county in the state who have launched a website that will educate and inform local government workers, as well as the public, about storm water management, what point source and non-point source pollution is, and what they as individuals can do to positively affect our environment," said Freeholder Director Sweeney.

"Public education and action is essential to reducing much of the non-point source pollution and stormwater runoff. Teaching our residents that by properly disposing of everyday things like pet waste, fertilizers and motor oil will drastically reduce non-point source pollution and improve our water quality," stated Director Sweeney. "We want to educate and motive our residents on what they can do to help improve our water ways and drinking water," stated Sweeney.

Sweeney noted that he wanted to create the website to also help educators teach children about reducing non-point source pollution. "Let's be honest, there is not a big buzz out there when you are talking about Stormwater Management, most people don't really know what it involves. That is why we are launching this website," said Sweeney. "But think back to twenty-five years ago when recycling was just becoming a hot issue, most people were just learning about recycling and it took time for them to learn to separate out their recyclables and not put them into the regular waste-stream. That is what we are working to do with Stormwater Management - start teaching them to make small changes that have a big impact. This is about raising people's awareness so that through a shared responsibility we can have a collective effect," Sweeney stated.

Gloucester County is the only county in the state that has taken a regional approach to Storm Water Management. The purpose of the regional approach is to not only meet the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection's (DEP) permit requirements, but do so in a way that cost savings could be realized by each municipality through coordinating a regional effort instead of having the burden rest on individual towns, as is called for by the state.

Earlier this year Gloucester County began to implement a plan on behalf of all of the county's 24 municipalities by announcing it would construct five regional salt storage sheds and purchase front end loaders for each, along with purchasing GPS systems, this salt storage program provides a cohesive and cost effective method for all of the towns to comply with the DEP's requirements.

"The County is addressing a number of each town's permit requirements to help alleviate the financial burden on them while providing for more coordinated efforts that will better manage our environment.," stated Freeholder Director Sweeney. "By working with our towns and educating our residents on how to reduce stormwater run-off and pollutants to our waterways, Gloucester County can uphold our rich environmental traditions and keep our land, air and water clean for future generations,"Freeholder Director Sweeney concluded.

Visit www.gcstormwater.com. The new Stormwater website is also linked to www.gcianj.com under "About the GCIA" and will be linked on the County's homepage www.co.gloucester.nj.us by the end of the week.