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Update On 2000 Bureau of State Audits Report Item L; March 10, 2003 Permitting & Enforcement Committee Item J; March 12, 2003 Budget & Administration Committee.

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Presentation on theme: "Update On 2000 Bureau of State Audits Report Item L; March 10, 2003 Permitting & Enforcement Committee Item J; March 12, 2003 Budget & Administration Committee."— Presentation transcript:

1 Update On 2000 Bureau of State Audits Report Item L; March 10, 2003 Permitting & Enforcement Committee Item J; March 12, 2003 Budget & Administration Committee  History of the Audit  Recommendations of the Audit Report  Actions Taken in Response  On-Going Activities Relative to Audit

2 History of Bureau of State Audits Report  Legislative Audit Committee requested audit of Board’s regulatory structure to determine if it achieves legislative intent of protecting Public Health & Safety & environment.  Also requested review of Permit processes for Sunshine Canyon LF & sample of three other landfills.  Report issued December 2000 (2000-109) concluded: “Board has limited authority & weak oversight that diminish its ability to protect public health & environment”  There have been 27 Committee and Board agenda items since 1/01 directly related to analysis and follow-up actions.

3 Update On 2000 State Audits Report The Audit Report included 16 recommendations:  Board Authority  Landfill Capacity; Environmental Justice  Board Policies  Long Term Gas Violation; Permit Enforcement  Inspections and Enforcement  Notice and Orders; 18-Month Inspections; Civil Penalties  Landfill Closure and Postclosure  Landfill Environmental Impacts  Diversion Rate Calculations

4 #1 - Explore options for taking into account the necessity for increased landfill capacity as a factor in granting permits. #2 - Update database & require local governments to report accurate landfill capacity information on annual basis in consistent manner. Actions Taken: July 2001- Board direction to staff to pursue policy or regulations for landfill capacity information. Staff incorporate annual remaining capacity in SWIS III. Capacity as factor in granting permits requires legislation-concept not directed. February 2002 – Update on data collection- direction to pursue regulations. June 2002 - Board directed staff to revise Permit application in regulations for more consistent reporting & compilation of remaining capacity information. September 2002- P&E Committee Workshop on Landfill Capacity Issues To Date – In April 2003 staff will request direction to begin formal rule making. State Audits Report- Landfill Capacity

5 #3 - Develop a proposal for incorporating environmental justice (EJ) into its permitting process and submit the proposal to the Cal/EPA for its approval. If proposal is approved, Board should seek legislative authority to deny permits if EJ concerns exist. #4 - Track demographic information on communities where solid waste facilities are located, & make this information available to the public. Actions Taken: January 2001- Discussion of Board-wide coordinated efforts to comply with requirements of SB 115 and SB 89 (Cal/EPA EJ Working Group). March 2001- Board participated in OPR's survey discussions & EJ Training. April 2001- Staff directed to prepare schedule and timeline to address Board programs and EJ and to seek a contractor to assist in that effort. June 2001- Board considered EJ action plan and gave further direction. October 2001- Board approved EJ actions for all programs. State Audits Report- Environmental Justice

6 November 2001 – The Board adopted Strategic Plan including Goal 6: “Continuously integrate environmental justice concerns into all of the Board’s programs and activities, including administrative & budgetary decisions”. June 2002 – The Board approved USCS as contractor to assess & increase community participation in all Board processes February 2003 – Demographic information & EJ issues sections included in all Board agenda items To Date – Staff researching level of community outreach for past permit actions (P&E Committee Direction 1/03). Staff continues to facilitate communication between community groups & facility operators (e.g. Bradley public meeting 2/13/03). Board-wide participation in Cal/EPA EJ Working Group is ongoing- Final Working Group Recommendations are pending. Strategic plan Goal 6 update to be presented at 3/03 Board meeting. State Audits Report- EJ (cont.)

7 #5 - Discontinue the use of 1994 policy that allows concurrence with permits for landfills that have long-term violations of state minimum standards. If Board believes the policy is necessary, it should request the Legislature to grant it the authority to issue permits to long-term violators under defined circumstances. Actions Taken: January 2001- Board directed staff to work with Member offices to develop regulatory concepts that address the issues within the policy. The policy was to continue to be in use until regulations were adopted. August 2002- Board directed staff to initiate regulatory concepts To Date – Staff has established required Technical Advisory Group with tasks & timelines to continue the informal rule making process. Consideration of regulations to start formal rulemaking projected- 7/03. State Audits Report- Board Policies

8 #6 - Discontinue the use of its 1990 enforcement policy that allows operators to violate the terms and conditions of their permits without first obtaining a permit revision. (Formerly called “PEP” Policy) Actions Taken: November 2000 – March 2001- Focus group meetings conducted to resolve issues on policy. Board directed interim modification to policy and directed that regulations be developed. June 2001- Modified policy was rejected and staff was directed to develop emergency regulations. August 2001 - The Board approved emergency regulations “Waiver Of Permit Terms And Conditions During Temporary Emergencies”. January 2002 – Permanent regulations noticed for initial comment. December 2002 – Permanent regulations were adopted. To Date - Regulations are pending OAL approval (expected late March) State Audits Report- Board Policies (cont.)

9 #7- Continue to improve Board performance in conducting landfill inspections every 18 months, as state law requires. #8 - Continue its efforts to modify enforcement regulations relating to tracking compliance with Notice & Orders. #9 - Ensure LEAs require operators to comply with Notice & Orders by date specified in Order, & issue penalties to those that do not comply. Actions Taken: July 2001- 95% of mandated Board inspections on time. 98% since 7/01. May 12, 2001 - The Board’s enforcement regulations become effective. 11/01; 3/02; 9/02 – Staff reports to Board on LEA enforcement orders issued. To Date– Staff will continue ongoing reports to the Board on LEA enforcement orders & enforcement order issues (next- 3/03. Staff continue to monitor & evaluate LEA performance relative to enforcement. State Audits Report- Inspections & Enforcement

10 #10 - Seek legislation to streamline the current process for imposing civil penalties. Actions Taken: May 2001 – Board discussion on current processes for civil penalties June 2001 - Board directed staff to pursue legislative changes on specific findings of Statutory Barriers to an effective civil penalties process in Board Resolution 2001-176. To Date: Staff continues to pursue legislative remedies as directed by the Board. State Audits Report- Inspections & Enforcement

11 In many cases, civil penalties too low to act as credible deterrent & should be consistent with other Cal/EPA agencies & commensurate with nature, extent, & gravity of violation. Criminal penalties are needed to strengthen enforcement of illegal and abandoned sites. Clarification needed that the Board’s enforcement authority and civil penalties process applies to closed, illegal and abandoned disposal sites (not solely solid waste facilities). Enforcement authority needed against prior owners or operators of disposal sites who are responsible for the noncompliance or illegal disposal activity. Enhanced site access authority needed for inspection, investigation, and remedial action or postclosure maintenance. The law should clearly prohibit disposal to any property other than a permitted or otherwise exempt facility. Time limits needed for some appeals to the Local Hearing Panel and under which petition for writ of mandate may be filed challenging a decision of the Board. State Audits Report- Inspections & Enforcement Board Resolution 2001-176: Statutory Barriers to Civil Penalties

12 #11 - Modify regulations to prevent LEAs from indefinitely extending deadlines for submitting closure plans. #12 - Modify regulations to reestablish the Board’s role as coordinating agency for the review and approval of closure/postclosure plans. #13 - Seek legislation that will allow Board to offer loans or grants to landfill operators in need of financial assistance to close landfills. Actions Taken: May 2001 - Board directed staff to amend Closure/Postclosure regulations September 2002 - Assembly Bill 467 establishes LF Closure Loan Program. December 2002 – Amended Closure/Postclosure Regulations adopted February 2003 – Regulations approved by OAL and effective. To Date – Implementation of the new regulations ongoing. Consideration of starting formal rulemaking for Closure Loan Program anticipated April 2003. State Audits Report- Landfill Closure & Postclosure

13 #14 - Complete study of environmental impacts of landfills in the State. Actions Taken: April 2001 – Progress report provided to the Board on contracted study. May 2002 - Checklist of pertinent environmental regulatory requirements for MSW landfills in California was completed & posted on the Board’s web site. December 2002 – Draft report on emerging technologies that could possibly improve California’s landfill performance if applied was received for review and comment by the Landfill Study Team. March 2003 – Comprehensive, cross-media inventory of 224 MSW landfills for the period 1998 through 2001 has been completed and will be posted on the Board’s web site. To Date – Statistical analysis of cross-media inventory to determine MSW landfill performance currently underway & will be presented upon completion. State Audits Report- Landfill Environmental Impacts

14 #15 - To ensure that reported diversion rates are accurate; the Board should modify regulations to require local governments to revise their base-year figures at least every 5 years. Then, it should identify & require local governments needing new base-year waste generation studies. Actions Taken: Board determined that it does not have statutory authority to require jurisdictions to perform a new base year every 5 years. Board determined that there is no basis for a 5 year interval for performing new base year studies. Board may require jurisdictions to perform new base-year studies if existing measurement is found to be not as accurate as possible. To Date – The Board has approved new base years for about 160 jurisdictions. It is anticipated that many new base years will be scheduled to go before the Board in the near future. State Audits Report- Diversion Rate Calculations

15 #16– To ensure Board provides consistent guidance to local governments on how to meet diversion goals it should take steps: 1. Decide on the appropriate types of materials local governments can count as diversion and the methods to quantify those amounts. 2. Seek concurrence from the Legislature as to whether its approach meets the original intent of the mandate. Actions Taken: Board found that current statute specifies materials allowed as diversion. Board adopted the Diversion Study Guide, as a guide, to assist jurisdictions when conducting base year studies. Board adopted “A Comprehensive System” as required by statute. This included broad policy perspective of improving the measurement system. Board provided policy guidelines regarding statewide issues for special circumstances, i.e.. Class II waste State Audits Report- Diversion Rate Calculations (cont.)

16 Update On 2000 Bureau of State Audit Report Item L; March 10, 2003 Permitting & Enforcement Committee Item J; March 12, 2003 Budget & Administration Committee  Summary and Conclusions  Questions and Discussion

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