70A.15.2250  <<  70A.15.2260 >>   70A.15.2270

Operating permits for air contaminant sourcesGenerallyFees, report to legislature.

The department of ecology, or board of an authority, shall require renewable permits for the operation of air contaminant sources subject to the following conditions and limitations:
(1) Permits shall be issued for a term of five years. A permit may be modified or amended during its term at the request of the permittee, or for any reason allowed by the federal clean air act. The rules adopted pursuant to subsection (2) of this section shall include rules for permit amendments and modifications. The terms and conditions of a permit shall remain in effect after the permit itself expires if the permittee submits a timely and complete application for permit renewal.
(2)(a) Rules establishing the elements for a statewide operating permit program and the process for permit application and renewal consistent with federal requirements shall be established by the department by January 1, 1993. The rules shall provide that every proposed permit must be reviewed prior to issuance by a professional engineer or staff under the direct supervision of a professional engineer in the employ of the permitting authority. The permit program established by these rules shall be administered by the department and delegated local air authorities. Rules developed under this subsection shall not preclude a delegated local air authority from including in a permit its own more stringent emission standards and operating restrictions.
(b) The board of any local air pollution control authority may apply to the department of ecology for a delegation order authorizing the local authority to administer the operating permit program for sources under that authority's jurisdiction. The department shall, by order, approve such delegation, if the department finds that the local authority has the technical and financial resources, to discharge the responsibilities of a permitting authority under the federal clean air act. A delegation request shall include adequate information about the local authority's resources to enable the department to make the findings required by this subsection. However, any delegation order issued under this subsection shall take effect ninety days after the environmental protection agency authorizes the local authority to issue operating permits under the federal clean air act.
(c) Except for the authority granted the energy facility site evaluation council to issue permits for the new construction, reconstruction, or enlargement or operation of new energy facilities under chapter 80.50 RCW, the department may exercise the authority, as delegated by the environmental protection agency, to administer Title IV of the federal clean air act as amended and to delegate such administration to local authorities as applicable pursuant to (b) of this subsection.
(3) In establishing technical standards, defined in RCW 70A.15.1030, the permitting authority shall consider and, if found to be appropriate, give credit for waste reduction within the process.
(4) Operating permits shall apply to all sources (a) where required by the federal clean air act, and (b) for any source that may cause or contribute to air pollution in such quantity as to create a threat to the public health or welfare. Subsection (b) of this subsection is not intended to apply to small businesses except when both of the following limitations are satisfied: (i) The source is in an area exceeding or threatening to exceed federal or state air quality standards; and (ii) the department provides a reasonable justification that requiring a source to have a permit is necessary to meet a federal or state air quality standard, or to prevent exceeding a standard in an area threatening to exceed the standard. For purposes of this subsection "areas threatening to exceed air quality standards" shall mean areas projected by the department to exceed such standards within five years. Prior to identifying threatened areas the department shall hold a public hearing or hearings within the proposed areas.
(5) Sources operated by government agencies are not exempt under this section.
(6) Within one hundred eighty days after the United States environmental protection agency approves the state operating permit program, a person required to have a permit shall submit to the permitting authority a compliance plan and permit application, signed by a responsible official, certifying the accuracy of the information submitted. Until permits are issued, existing sources shall be allowed to operate under presently applicable standards and conditions provided that such sources submit complete and timely permit applications.
(7) All draft permits shall be subject to public notice and comment. The rules adopted pursuant to subsection (2) of this section shall specify procedures for public notice and comment. Such procedures shall provide the permitting agency with an opportunity to respond to comments received from interested parties prior to the time that the proposed permit is submitted to the environmental protection agency for review pursuant to section 505(a) of the federal clean air act. In the event that the environmental protection agency objects to a proposed permit pursuant to section 505(b) of the federal clean air act, the permitting authority shall not issue the permit, unless the permittee consents to the changes required by the environmental protection agency.
(8) The procedures contained in chapter 43.21B RCW shall apply to permit appeals. The pollution control hearings board may stay the effectiveness of any permit issued under this section during the pendency of an appeal filed by the permittee, if the permittee demonstrates that compliance with the permit during the pendency of the appeal would require significant expenditures that would not be necessary in the event that the permittee prevailed on the merits of the appeal.
(9) After the effective date of any permit program promulgated under this section, it shall be unlawful for any person to: (a) Operate a permitted source in violation of any requirement of a permit issued under this section; or (b) fail to submit a permit application at the time required by rules adopted under subsection (2) of this section.
(10) Each air operating permit shall state the origin of and specific legal authority for each requirement included therein. Every requirement in an operating permit shall be based upon the most stringent of the following requirements:
(a) The federal clean air act and rules implementing that act, including provision of the approved state implementation plan;
(b) This chapter and rules adopted thereunder;
(c) In permits issued by a local air pollution control authority, the requirements of any order or regulation adopted by that authority;
(d) Chapter 70A.388 RCW and rules adopted thereunder; and
(e) Chapter 80.50 RCW and rules adopted thereunder.
(11) Consistent with the provisions of the federal clean air act, the permitting authority may issue general permits covering categories of permitted sources, and temporary permits authorizing emissions from similar operations at multiple temporary locations.
(12) Permit program sources within the territorial jurisdiction of an authority delegated the operating permit program shall file their permit applications with that authority, except that permit applications for sources regulated on a statewide basis pursuant to RCW 70A.15.3080 shall be filed with the department. Permit program sources outside the territorial jurisdiction of a delegated authority shall file their applications with the department. Permit program sources subject to chapter 80.50 RCW shall, irrespective of their location, file their applications with the energy facility site evaluation council.
(13) When issuing operating permits to coal-fired electric generating plants, the permitting authority shall establish requirements consistent with Title IV of the federal clean air act.
(14)(a) The department and the local air authorities are authorized to assess and to collect, and each source emitting one hundred tons or more per year of a regulated pollutant shall pay an interim assessment to fund the development of the operating permit program during fiscal year 1994.
(b) The department shall conduct a workload analysis and prepare an operating permit program development budget for fiscal year 1994. The department shall allocate among all sources emitting one hundred tons or more per year of a regulated pollutant during calendar year 1992 the costs identified in its program development budget according to a three-tiered model, with each of the three tiers being equally weighted, based upon:
(i) The number of sources;
(ii) The complexity of sources; and
(iii) The size of sources, as measured by the quantity of each regulated pollutant emitted by the source.
(c) Each local authority and the department shall collect from sources under their respective jurisdictions the interim fee determined by the department and shall remit the fee to the department.
(d) Each local authority may, in addition, allocate its fiscal year 1994 operating permit program development costs among the sources under its jurisdiction emitting one hundred tons or more per year of a regulated pollutant during calendar year 1992 and may collect an interim fee from these sources. A fee assessed pursuant to this subsection (14)(d) shall be collected at the same time as the fee assessed pursuant to (c) of this subsection.
(e) The fees assessed to a source under this subsection shall be limited to the first seven thousand five hundred tons for each regulated pollutant per year.
(15)(a) The department shall determine the persons liable for the fee imposed by subsection (14) of this section, compute the fee, and provide by November 1, 1993, the identity of the fee payer with the computation of the fee to each local authority and to the department of revenue for collection. The department of revenue shall collect the fee computed by the department from the fee payers under the jurisdiction of the department. The administrative, collection, and penalty provisions of chapter 82.32 RCW shall apply to the collection of the fee by the department of revenue. The department shall provide technical assistance to the department of revenue for decisions made by the department of revenue pursuant to RCW 82.32.160 and 82.32.170. All interim fees collected by the department of revenue on behalf of the department and all interim fees collected by local authorities on behalf of the department shall be deposited in the air operating permit account. The interim fees collected by the local air authorities to cover their permit program development costs under subsection (14)(d) of this section shall be deposited in the dedicated accounts of their respective treasuries.
(b) All fees identified in this section shall be due and payable on March 1, 1994, except that the local air pollution control authorities may adopt by rule an earlier date on which fees are to be due and payable. The section 5, chapter 252, Laws of 1993 amendments to RCW 70A.15.2260 do not have the effect of terminating, or in any way modifying, any liability, civil or criminal, incurred pursuant to the provisions of RCW 70A.15.2260 (15) and (17) as they existed prior to July 25, 1993.
(16) For sources or source categories not required to obtain permits under subsection (4) of this section, the department or local authority may establish by rule control technology requirements. If control technology rule revisions are made by the department or local authority under this subsection, the department or local authority shall consider the remaining useful life of control equipment previously installed on existing sources before requiring technology changes. The department or any local air authority may issue a general permit, as authorized under the federal clean air act, for such sources.
(17) Emissions of greenhouse gases as defined in RCW 70A.45.010 must be reported as required by RCW 70A.15.2200. The reporting provisions of RCW 70A.15.2200 shall not apply to any other emissions from any permit program source after the effective date of United States environmental protection agency approval of the state operating permit program.


FindingsIntentScope of chapter 14, Laws of 20082008 c 14: See RCW 70A.45.005 and 70A.45.900.
Finding1991 c 199: See note following RCW 70A.15.1005.
Air operating permit account: RCW 70A.15.1010.
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