Tuesday, June 28, 2022

DEP To Recommend Fee Increase For Erosion & Sediment Control Permits To EQB July 12

Environmental Quality Board is scheduled to meet July 12 on a final regulation establishing a municipal waste rural transfer facility permit-by-rule and to hear a presentation on DEP’s permit fee report on the Chapter 102 Erosion and Sedimentation Program.

The agenda does not include Part II of the final regulation reducing VOC/methane emissions covering conventional oil and gas operations.  Read more here.

The agenda also does not include DEP’s evaluation and recommendation on whether to increase well plugging bonding amounts for conventional oil and gas and UNconventional shale gas wells.  Read more here.

Chapter 102 Fee Report

DEP reports the fees collected for Chapter 102 Erosion and Sedimentation Permit reviews have failed to cover the costs of the program for the last five years, excluding costs for Oil and Gas Program Chapter 102 reviews.  

The deficit started in DEP’s part of the program FY 2016-17 at $816,390 and increased to $1,438,062 in FY 2020-21.

Costs and fees collected to implement the program by county conservation district have experienced a deficit starting in FY 2013-14.  In FY 2020-21 the deficit was $6,889,551.

The deficit was also caused by cuts in General Fund support for this and other water quality programs.

In summary, existing fees cover about 70 percent of DEP’s costs and 65 percent of county conservation district costs for this program.

DEP points out that both Chapter 102 and a 2019 Legislative Budget and Finance Committee report require the agency to recommend changes that eliminate any disparity between program income generated by fees and the costs to administer the program.

DEP is recommending an increase in permit fees to cover the deficit.

Click Here for a copy of the report.

Municipal Waste Transfer GP

DEP is recommending final action on a permit-by-rule for municipal waste transfer facilities to encourage the responsible and convenient collection of waste for disposal and recycling in rural areas.

DEP believes these facilities will help alleviate the mismanagement of residential waste by burning or illegal dumping of waste in rural parts of Pennsylvania. 

This will also help reduce the costs state and local governments incur to clean up illegal dump sites and reduce the enforcement costs the Department currently incurs to respond to burning and illegal dumping complaints.

Click Here for a summary of the final regulation.

The meeting will be held in Room 105 of the Rachel Carson Building starting at 9:00 a.m.  Click Here to register to attend online via WebEx.  The meeting will also be available by conference call-- 1-415-655-0003 Access code: 2632 354 6676. 

For available handouts and more information, visit the Environmental Quality Board webpage. Questions should be directed to Laura Griffin, Regulatory Coordinator,  laurgriffi@pa.gov, 717-772-3277.

[Posted: June 28, 2022]  PA Environment Digest

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