CSO Members,

Thanks for reading another edition of the CSO Newsletter Members Only Section. Please see the below Members Only announcements and information.

We are thrilled that our CSO 2019 will have the CSO Membership back in the Gulf Coast! We will meet in South Padre Island, Texas from November 4-8, 2019. More information will follow but please hold the dates on your calendar.




From The Hill: Congress is on recess until June 3rd when they will finally pass the disaster aid bill that is supported by the president and passed through the Senate last week. However, two Republican members in the House have blocked it from passing in the House over recess by objecting to it being passed by voice vote and therefore it cannot be passed until after the recess when Congress is fully back in session. More info on what is included in the bill can be found here: https://www.appropriations.senate.gov/imo/media/doc/Emergency%20Supplemental%20Summary_Disaster.pdf

CSO Work Group Updates:

Coastal Nonpoint Work Group:  Our next conditionally approved state call will be held on Tuesday, June 25 at 3pm ET. Be on the lookout for an agenda for this meeting in the coming weeks. Sadly, Bridget Faust will leave CSO at the end of June as the term of her fellowship expires. Following her departure, John Ryan-Henry will serve as the new staff point of contact for the Coastal Nonpoint Work Group. John will continue to support the full work group and also facilitate the conditionally approved state calls. All questions regarding this transition should be directed to Bridget Faust (bfaust@coastalstates.org).

Communications Work Group: The Communications Work Group meets Thursday and will discuss the Federal Consistency Fact Sheet. We have a lot of facts and figures from the ANPR response letter to use regarding Federal Consistency in general. But we would like to include state / territory examples of where Federal Consistency: 1) improved timelines, and/or 2) resulted in a better project or environmental outcome. Of course photos of those projects would be nice. Please send an email to mmolnar@coastalstates.org if you have an item you would like to highlight.

June is Oceans Month – Your program can tag in on Social Media to highlight work your program is doing / funding – use #30DaysofOcean and #CoastalManagement.

Reminder – if your program uses social media – Please follow the CSO pages and re-share, retweet, repost our posts. We post items that benefit the overall CZM community and need your help to ensure that we reach as large of an audience as possible. We thank you in advance for your assistance. The CSO social media pages are: @CoastalStatesOrganization  @coastalstates_cso  @Coastal_States

Other Updates:

OCS Update: NOAA announced in the 2019 Spring Unified Regulatory Agenda that it intends to release a Proposed Rule in August regarding federal consistency for OCS projects, following up the March ANPR. CSO will continue to monitor developments in this rulemaking. Meanwhile, the Department of the Interior has appealed a federal district court ruling that the Administration could not overturn a previous administration’s withdrawal of OCS lands from oil and gas leasing. The Secretary of the Interior has previously stated that DOI will wait for appeals to be resolved in that case before releasing the next draft of its five-year leasing program opening new areas of the Atlantic and Pacific to development. DOI has stated that it will not postpone ongoing G&G permitting in the Atlantic while the appeal is pending.

Ongoing CSO-FEMA Engagement: Thank you to all the members who provided responses to our survey of member insights and priorities regarding FEMA’s mitigation programs. View the results here. We have submitted your responses to FEMA and will continue to work with FEMA staff on the best ways to connect with coastal managers. For those who were unable to complete the survey before the deadline – if you have responses or material you want us to share with FEMA in our ongoing engagement, you can still complete the questionnaire or reach out to John Ryan-Henry (jryan-henry@coastalstates.org). Our contacts at FEMA were explicit in their appreciation of this content and immediately notified that it will of great value to them as they craft new policies.

New FEMA Feedback Opportunity: DEADLINE JULY 15. Last week, FEMA released a public comment platform to provide feedback on the development of the Building Resilient Communities and Infrastructure (BRIC) program. The platform asks a series of 10 prompts regarding program design and provides a forum for conversation about individual suggestions. Comments will be accepted through July 15, on IdeaScale at https://fema.ideascale.com/a/campaign-home/61112 or by email at BUILDBRIC@fema.dhs.gov. FEMA will also be hosting four webinars in June regarding different aspects of the new BRIC program. Webinar times and details are available here and on the members only calendar.

CRS Newsletter: The NFIP/CRS Update is a bimonthly newsletter published by ISO containing news about new developments and products, upcoming events, management tips, and training and event listings. The April/May 2019 edition highlights information on providing feedback for the upcoming 2021 CRS Coordinator’s Manual update as well as outreach materials and training opportunities. Click here to read the latest edition. To sign up for the NFIP/CRS Update Newsletter, subscribe here.

Pew Saltmarsh Survey Request: The Pew Charitable Trusts has reached out to CSO to request member participation in an online questionnaire. The survey is intended to identify stakeholder needs in salt marsh conservation and restoration and perspectives on potential improvements to current policies and management actions, in order to target Pew’s future policy work. This survey is part of a larger exploration by Pew about if and how national-level policies could be strengthened to complement the work being done in coastal states and localities to conserve and restore salt marshes. More information on the project is available here. You can find the survey at the following link: Salt Marsh Protection Survey. Please contact Ruth Driscoll-Lovejoy at SaltMarsh@pewtrusts.org or 202.540.6521 with any questions.

CSO Members Only Website Update: Four pages were recently added to the members only section of the CSO website.

  • The Agency Resources page under Member Resources shares helpful materials and links from federal agency partners.
  • The Funding Opportunities page under Member Resources provides a sortable table of grants and opportunities for states either to apply for or to share with coastal communities.
  • The CRS Resources page under Issue Pages shares links to CSO-built and external resources for the Community Rating System.
  • The Chair’s Initiative page under Work Groups provides a roadmap and key documents for the 2019-2020 CZMA Reauthorization strategy.

To see a map of resources available on the members only section, click on the grey “Contents” banner at the top of the Member Homepage. If you have any feedback on how we can make this site more useful to you, please reach out to Grant Williams (gwilliams@coastalstates.org) or John Ryan-Henry (jryan-henry@coastalstates.org).

CSO Member in DC: CSO staff and special guest Scudder Mackey of Ohio met with Congressional, OMB, USACE, and Assistant Secretary of the Army staffs to discuss the proposed Great Lakes Coastal Resiliency Study and coastal management broadly. While in town, Mr. Mackey also participated in a Hill briefing on Beneficial Use of dredge material. We thank Scudder for his time and efforts in representing CSO, Ohio, and coastal management nationally.

Great Lakes Shoreline Habitat Assessment: CSO staff will begin work on the Great Lakes Shoreline Habitat Assessment project in the near future. The work is funded by EPA Great Lakes Restoration Initiative funds by way of NOAA. The work includes a series of meetings, conference calls, and workshops aimed at identifying shared coastal management principles and goals (within each Great Lakes state and possibly across states).  Partners will develop a list of available data and resources (for each state) for which to focus site-specific restoration work and provide a list of coastal and nearshore habitat restoration projects for prioritization in FY21 and beyond. Mike Molnar will attend the Great Lakes Regional Meeting in Ashland, Wisconsin June 17-20 to discuss this project in greater detail.


Webinar Announcements:

(1) Increasing Coastal Resilience Through Inundation Modeling and Green Infrastructure in the Northeast (June 11, 2019 at 11am Pacific/2pm Eastern): OCM is hosting the second in a series of webinars highlighting lessons learned from Coastal Resilience Grant projects. The webinar will focus on work undertaken in coastal New England to improve the public’s understanding of coastal storm impacts and increase awareness and implementation of nature-based infrastructure management approaches, such as living shorelines.

Register (required): http://noaacsc.adobeconnect.com/crgnorthest/event/registration.html

Questions? Contact Lindy Betzhold (lindy.betzhold@noaa.gov)

(2) Webinars on the Community Rating System: The CRS Webinar Series provides training opportunities to communities that are not yet participating in the Community Rating System or local government staff that are new to the CRS, and to local government staff with experience in the CRS. The Series includes basic introductory sessions and more advanced topics, most averaging about an hour in length. Register here and see topics and dates below.

June 18 Credit for Drainage System Maintenance (Activity 540)
June 19 Preparing an Annual Recertification
July 16 Developing a Repetitive Loss Area Analysis
July 17 Flood Warning & Response (Activity 610)

(3)  CSO-OCM Series Recordings: CSO has been co-hosting a webinar series with NOAA OCM aimed at connecting you and your staff to relevant Digital Coast resources since December 2018. Thanks for all of your participation in the last few months! For those of you that haven’t been able to participate, you can find recordings of parts 1-4 of this webinar series online at coastalstates.org/webinars. Please contact Bridget Faust with any questions.


Finally, as noted in the Coastal Nonpoint Work group Update, Bridget Faust’s fellowship will end next month. Bridget has been an absolute asset to CSO and our members on a range of areas and we cannot thank her enough for her diligence and commitment. On a personal level, she has been a pleasure to work with and a true part of the CSO team. While we are sad to see her go, we are hopeful and confident we will see Bridget stay in coastal management given her passion for the issues.

Thank you for reading another edition of the CSO Member’s only newsletter and please be in touch with myself or relevant staff on any of the items above.


Bradley Watson
Executive Director
Coastal States Organization