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PA Bulletin, Doc. No. 09-960


Notice of Comments Issued

[39 Pa.B. 2650]
[Saturday, May 23, 2009]

   Section 5(g) of the Regulatory Review Act (71 P. S. § 745.5(g)) provides that the Independent Regulatory Review Commission (Commission) may issue comments within 30 days of the close of the public comment period. The Commission comments are based upon the criteria contained in section 5.2 of the Regulatory Review Act (71 P. S. § 645.5b).

   The Commission has issued comments on the following proposed regulation. The agency must consider these comments in preparing the final-form regulation. The final-form regulation must be submitted within 2 years of the close of the public comment period or it will be deemed withdrawn.

Reg. No. Agency/Title Close of the Public Comment Period IRRC Comments Issued
7-432 Environmental
   Quality Board
Administration of the    Storage Tank and    Spill Prevention    Program
39 Pa.B. 1300
(March 14, 2009)


Environmental Quality Board
Regulation #7-432 (IRRC #2753)

Administration of the Storage Tank and
Spill Prevention Program

May 13, 2009

   We submit for your consideration the following comments on the proposed rulemaking published in the March 14, 2009 Pennsylvania Bulletin. Our comments are based on criteria in section 5.2 of the Regulatory Review Act (71 P. S. § 745.5b). Section 5.1(a) of the Regulatory Review Act (71 P. S. § 745.5a(a)) directs the Environmental Quality Board (Board) to respond to all comments received from us or any other source.

General.--Reasonableness; Clarity.

   The United States Environmental Protection Agency, Region III (EPA) submitted comments requesting that the Board revise this proposed rulemaking to make it consistent with EPA guidelines. EPA's suggested amendment would require operator retraining if an underground storage tank system is determined to be out of compliance. The Board should amend the regulation to be consistent with EPA guidelines or explain the reason that it is deviating from these guidelines.

1.  Section 245.436. Operator training.--Protection of public safety; Reasonableness; Clarity.

   We have five concerns with this regulation.

   First, FirstEnergy requested clarification on whether its 24-hour emergency contact number would meet the Board's requirements in Subsection (a)(3)(iii). The Board should explain whether FirstEnergy's emergency contact number would be sufficient and what would need to be done to ensure that these requirements are satisfied.

   Second, under Subsections (e)(1) and (3), FirstEnergy asserts that it would be difficult to maintain a current list of Class C operators and phone numbers because of the high turnover rate for these operators. It suggests that if a company has a 24-hour emergency contact number, that number could be used in lieu of a Class C contact list at each facility. If the posting of a 24-hour emergency contact number would sufficiently address public safety and environmental concerns, the Board should include this option in the final-form regulation.

   Third, a commentator expressed multiple concerns that public safety is not protected by allowing tank installers or inspectors to act as the educated tank operator under Subsections (b)(2)(iv)(A) and (B). The Board should explain how the public safety is protected by these provisions.

   Fourth, Subsection (b)(3) requires the Class C operator to notify the Class A or B operator and emergency responders ''when necessary.'' In its comments, Sunoco states that it interprets this provision as requiring notification only ''as appropriate or necessary depending on the type of incident or emergency.'' The regulation is vague in that it doesn't identify the instances in which notification to the Class A or B operator is mandatory. In the final-form regulation, the Board should clarify the circumstances which require mandatory notification.

   Finally, Subsection (e)(2) contains the phrase ''readily available'' in two places. What does the Board consider to be ''readily available''? Must the documents be kept onsite? This should be clarified in the final-form regulation.


[Pa.B. Doc. No. 09-960. Filed for public inspection May 22, 2009, 9:00 a.m.]

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