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site remediation program

Legislative Stakeholders Legislative Reform Summary

DEP Site Remediation
Legislative Reform Summary

The Department is seeking legislative reform to address the following issues:

Licensed Site Professional

  • Establish a Licensing Site Professional Program (LSP).
  • Establish timeframes for when persons responsible for conducting the remediation must complete each remediation phase, and authorize the Department to draw on a remediation funding source if the person fails to meet the timeframes.
  • Establish different tiers of contaminated cases from the least complex/posing the lowest risk to the most complex/posing the greatest risk (including certain non-compliant persons responsible for conducting the remediation). The last category would require the person responsible for conducting the remediation to relinquish control of the consultant and remedy selection.

Remedy Selection

  • Amend the Brownfields Act to remove the restriction that the choice of the remedial action can only be made by the person performing the remediation and allow the Department to disapprove or choose a remedy based on certain factors.
  • Establish enhanced remedies for residential, educational or child care uses.

Permanent Remedies

  • Provide a greater degree of finality by removing the requirement for future additional remediation if a remediation standard changes by an “order of magnitude” or greater, in those instances when a party performs a permanent remedy. This will provide an incentive for parties to remediate sites to a permanent remedy.
  • Amend legislation to 1) add surety bond and letter of credit as acceptable RFS forms; 2) require all parties who are required to establish RFS to pay the RFS surcharge; and 3) limit or eliminate the ability to self-guarantee.

Engineering and Institutional Controls

  • Convert biennial certifications into permits.
  • Expand the One-Call system to include contaminated sites with engineering controls.
  • Establish a clear difference between conditional and unconditional NFAs.
  • Expressly include costs of inspecting/maintaining engineering and institutional controls in the Remediation Funding Source.
  • Require “Regulated Entities” to provide an electronic copy of all DEP submittals.

UST

  • Require all new or replacement regulated USTs and all new or replacement piping to have secondary containment.
  • Ban new or replacement unregulated underground storage tanks. Instead require above ground storage tanks, or if there is no alternative, require higher standards including secondary containment for the underground storage tanks.
  • Amend the UST Act to require additional Remediation Funding Source (RFS) if a discharge has occurred and the Department confirms the estimated cost is greater that $1 million.

Enforcement

  • Amend legislation to make Site Remediation enforcement provisions consistent with other environmental statutes.
  • Authorize ability to establish a lien, regardless of funding source, for cleanup and removal costs and related costs made by the State (now only allowed under Spill Fund).

HDSRF

  • Amend legislation to authorize the use of the HDSRF for Technical Assistance Grants to be used by citizen groups or communities to hire consultants to review and explain remediation proposals/plans.
  • Amend HDSRF to provide funding for both Preliminary Assessment and Site Investigation activities for daycare facilities.
  • Allow UST Fund applicants to be reimbursed for DEP oversight costs.
  • Amend HDSRF to 1) allow applicant to be reimbursed for DEP oversight costs; 2) clarify that an applicant must own the property at the time of application; 3) provide matching grants for remedial action when end use is for green energy production (e.g., solar or wind on a landfill) and agriculture; and 4) expand eligibility for sites within an area with an approved redevelopment plan.

Financial

  • Increase flexibility in the use of CBT constitutionally-dedicated funds between purposes.
  • Allow the Department to charge persons responsible for conducting the remediation (excluding homeowners) indirect charges.

Dry Cleaners

  • Establish a state-funded dry cleaner remediation program.

Change in Use

  • Require developers to provide notification to the local government for properties with a change in use to residential, educational or childcare from the list of buildings in the “Kiddie Kollege Bill”.
  • Require Preliminary Assessment/Site Investigation of all properties if there is a change in use of a property from industrial to residential.

Clean Up of Statutes

  • Delete requirement that DEP produce a master list of known hazardous sites and rank those sites in order of priority for cleanup.
  • Eliminate the requirement to establish an Environmental Advisory Task Force.
  • Delete the provision in Brownfields Act (58:10B-2(b) that requires DEP to record list of variances.
  • Clarify the term “entire” site so that it includes only those areas for which the local entity has issued construction permit or certificate of occupancy.
  • Amend the provision to eliminate DEP from making the determination whether a local government can take over a remediation.

Off-Site Liability

  • Remove innocent purchaser liability for off-site contamination.