Fee for Hazardous Waste Program Fee Exemption
Proposed Rules: Closed to Comments
Statement of Basis and Purpose
The Office of Environmental Remediation (“Office” or “OER”) administers the New York City Voluntary Cleanup Program (“VCP”) which directs developers to remediate light to moderately contaminated sites in New York City. OER and the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (“DEC”) executed a Memorandum of Agreement (“MOA”) in July 2014 through which DEC recognizes the city Voluntary Cleanup Program and coordinates with OER in setting remedies for sites in the city cleanup program.
In the course of remediating sites, developers often must excavate and dispose of hazardous waste that had been previously buried at their properties. New York State Environmental Conservation Law (“ECL”) § 72-0402 requires parties that generate hazardous waste, including owners of city VCP sites, to pay DEC $130 for each ton of hazardous waste they generate. On November 17, 2014, DEC agreed to exempt city VCP sites from paying the state hazardous waste program fee in an amendment to the MOA.
OER was established by Local Law No. 27 of 2009, and Charter § 15(e)(17) authorizes its Director to establish fees for programs administered by the office. To implement the amendment to the MOA, OER must certify to DEC each VCP site that generates hazardous waste to DEC. This work requires OER to conduct site inspections, work closely with a site’s representatives and certify to DEC that removal of hazardous waste from a site in the city program was proper and complied with all applicable laws and regulations.
The fee established by this proposed rule will cover OER’s costs in making certifications to DEC that each city VCP site with hazardous waste is worthy of an exemption from the state hazardous waste program fee. OER seeks to recover its costs in providing the service to VCP sites and to provide sufficient income over time for the office to expand its staff to manage the program as more city redevelopment projects seek to benefit from it.
The proposed rule assesses a fee of $8.00 for each ton of hazardous waste that a city Voluntary Cleanup Program site generates.