Presentation on Air Quality Control Enforcement
TRANSPORTATION LEGISLATION REVIEW COMMITTEE
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09:40 AM -- Presentation on Air Quality Control Enforcement
The committee returned to order.
Mr. Tourangeau summarized CDPHE discussions with the Colorado Asphalt Pavement Association (CAPA) regarding air quality control issues, enforcement, and fines. CAPA and CDPHE officials met on two occasions to discuss grievances on enforcement issues. Handouts were provided to the committee (Attachments B and C). Mr. Tourangeau discussed current penalties and enforcement procedures.
Mr. Tourangeau discussed enforcement settlement procedures. Repeat noncompliance incurs higher penalties. Mr. Tourangeau clarified fines assessed and amounts and spoke about the settlement letters that are provided to companies in violation. Mr. Tourangeau also stated that he discussed with CAPA statutory requirements specific to air quality enforcement. He further discussed the handouts provided to the committee (Attachments B and C).
Mr. Tourangeau stated that documents have been provided to CAPA regarding enforcement procedures. Seminars and "webinars" have also been provided to asphalt company permit holders. Mr. Tourangeau also stated that informal noncompliance assistance will continue to be provided on site.
Mr. Tom Peterson, representing the Colorado Asphalt Pavement Association, stated industry concerns regarding fines for noncompliance. Mr. Peterson discussed grievances provided to the CDPHE Air Pollution Control Division. A copy of the grievances was provided to the committee members (Attachment D). He further thanked Mr. Tourangeau for working with CAPA and continuing a dialogue regarding fines and enforcement issues. Mr. Peterson expressed that he would like to have continued discussions with CDPHE to educate permit holders.
Mr. Tourangeau and Mr. Peterson responded to questions from committee members. Senator Williams asked Mr. Peterson to discuss whether it would be productive for industry representatives to be involved during the enforcement appeals process. Mr. Tourangeau clarified the appellate process and personnel involved. He further stated that industry representatives are not currently a part of the appellate and review process. Mr. Peterson discussed other agencies' claims and review processes that do have third party involvement.
Senator Kopp asked when the last time was that air quality and pollution enforcement administrative regulations were updated. He further asked for an explanation as to why inspections have increased in recent years. Mr. Peterson discussed CAPA concerns regarding the number of fines assessed and the enforcement process. Mr. Tourangeau discussed materials that CDPHE will provide to CAPA for use in educating permit holders. Senator Kopp asked Mr. Tourangeau to discuss uniformity in the inspections process.
Mr. Peterson stated that operators may deal with multiple inspection personnel which can impact the inspection process. He further discussed the need for a continued dialogue between CAPA and CDPHE. Representative King asked if any consideration is given to economic conditions relative to the number of inspections. Mr. Tourangeau responded that the inspection cycle is mandated by state and federal law. Representative King further asked whether inspections will be more or less frequent due to the economic climate. Representative McNulty stated concerns about loss of revenue for businesses. He further discussed the mission of CDPHE efforts to limit pollution.
Mr. Tourangeau discussed the inspection cycle for permit holders as well as issues around continued noncompliance and repeat violators. Mr. Tourangeau pointed to specific companies that have prioritized compliance. Representative McNulty stated that he would like conversations with CDPHE and CAPA to continue. Representative Tyler discussed the quantity of fines, number of violations, and continued noncompliance. He further stated that repeat violations may indicate a need for additional education. Representative McFadyen asked Mr. Peterson if increased communication between CAPA and CDPHE is beneficial.
Mr. Tourangeau stated that continued dialogue is helpful. However, staffing does pose challenges. Senator Renfroe discussed concerns related to stormwater and pollution enforcement. Senator Renfroe also stated concerns about punitive regulation. Representative Merrifield stated the fines are necessary for repeat offenders. Representative McFadyen acknowledged persons in the audience.
Mr. Robin Toulette, representing himself, discussed pollution in the Fraser Valley. Mr. Toulette discussed air and groundwater pollution problems in the valley. Mr. Peterson stated that the plant operator in the valley has had systematic and continuous work with regulators. Senator Gibbs asked where the plant was located.
The committee recessed.