2006 ENVIRONMENTAL CONSERVATION LEGISLATIVE PROGRAM
Staff Contact: Ken Pokalsky
Following is The Business Council's 2006 Legislative Program. It identifies priority issues to be addressed by the Committees and Councils during 2006.
- The Business Council will be proposing legislation to address several adverse impacts related to hazardous waste fees, including:
- assure no retroactive imposition (prior to 4/1/05) of special assessments based on the Appellate Division's decision in CWM v. Roth.
- re-establish a special assessment exemption for all remedial wastes, and eliminate "double taxation" of process wastes generated and disposed of within New York State (this issue depends on outcome of Court of Appeals review of CWM v. Roth.)
- continue to roll back
the 2003 program fee surcharges by: repealing the $6,000 surcharge
on generation of hazardous wastewater; exempting all recycled
hazardous wastes from hazardous waste program fee surcharges.
- The Business Council will be proposing legislation to amend the state's "chemical facility security" act (Section 714 of the Executive Law) to:
- limit the scope of facility upgrades that can be required to address potential acts of terrorism, and
- reassign the authority
to require security improvements from the Department of Environmental
Conservation to the Office of Homeland Security.
- We will also be responding to legislative proposals to adopt
new state-level anti-terrorism requirements for other sectors
- Continue to work with the DEC to assure reasonable amendments
to the state's "new source review" regulation (Part 231), and
assure that any newly adopted state-level PSD regulation include
all available federal reforms (i.e., use of past actual to future
potential test; extension of base-line period; adoption of pre-existing
exemptions for routine maintenance).
- Continue to address issues related to the remediation of hazardous waste/hazardous substance disposal sites, including:
- establishment of a reasonable state policy for assessing and responding to vapor intrusion impacts.
- respond to DEC's proposed restructuring of Part 375 affecting
state superfund cleanups, implementation of the state's brownfield
program, and establishment of soil cleanup standards for brownfield
- Assure continuation of reasonable Title V air emission fee program, and effective implementation of the Title V permit programs.
- oppose any unreasonable changes to the Title V fee program.Last
year, the Executive Budget proposed to increase the fee cap to
$58 per ton, and impose a minimum $1,250 permit fee.
Quantities - Amend Part 597 "reportable quantities," to
make New York State's program more consistent with federal release
- Oppose legislation that allows towns to
adopt local 2% real property transfer tax for purpose of open
space preservation account.
- Oppose legislation that extends
NYS's freshwater wetlands regulatory program to all wetlands
over one acre in size.
- Oppose legislation to extend the bottle
bill to wide range of non-carbonated beverages and captured unclaimed
deposits for state spending through the "Environmental Protection
- Support statutory and regulatory changes to streamline
the DEC's project review process, including: clarifying the standard
for when a permit application is "complete;" heighten the standard
for adjudication of issues through permit hearing process; mandatory
comment and review timetables; time limits concluding the application
and hearing process; and a 'fast-track' process for applications
that improve environmental performance.
- Support legislation and/or
regulatory measures to encourage the use of environmental management
systems, including incentives related to enforcement and penalties,
compliance flexibility, regulatory oversight, and reporting
- Support legislation that allows the waiver (or
reduction) of civil penalties in instances where minor violations
are quickly identified, reported and remedied.
- Oppose adoption
of state-level "citizen suit" legislation.
- Oppose new restrictions
on the safe, lawful use of pesticides, such as mandatory phase-out
of pesticide use, and state-level bans on federally-approved
specific pesticide products.
- Oppose legislation that would
impose restrictions on the use of specific chemicals or compounds
in the manufacturing process, or impose new product labeling
and/or product "takeback" requirements
based on production materials.
- Support legislation that provides
a FOIL exemption for material submitted to the Environmental
Facility Corporation's multimedia compliance assistance program.
- Support legislation that makes small business environmental compliance efforts eligible for state financial assistance programs.