January 25, 2011

Phase I of Gov. LePage's regulatory reform proposal

(Continued from page 2)

•    Increase the minimum size requirement and minimum subdivided lots requirement of a development or facility to trigger this regulation.  Reduce the length of impact of DEP compliance orders under this statute to 15 years. Reject DEP’s proposed new standards regarding “scenic impacts”, which are already regulated by the Natural Resources Protection Act.

•    Reject DEP’s proposed new standards regarding “community character”, as these standards are accounted for in the work of local boards in the host municipality.

•    Reject DEP’s proposed rule re: culverts.

•    Review and improve the process by which DEP regulates municipal snow dumps and eliminate fees for this filing process.

•    Revise DEP Rules Chapter 418 (Beneficial Reuse) to eliminate significant hurdles to beneficial reuse of materials that would otherwise be classified as a waste by DEP.

•    Modify DEP Chapter 405 Solid waste rules that require continued monitoring where there is any statistically significant increase in groundwater constituents irrespective of its impact (e.g., groundwater still meets drinking water standards).

•    Direct the DEP to review its Solid Waste regulations relative to those in other states and recommend regulatory changes to make them less comparatively stringent, paying specific attention to:
-    beneficial reuse of materials for fuel
-    odor standards

•    Clarify stormwater requirements by adding clear and understandable definitions and guidance.

•    Streamline stormwater requirements regarding use of proprietary systems.

•    Direct DEP to concur with EPA on the general stormwater permit that is currently under development by the EPA for the 6 New England states and not to exceed EPA standards

•    Incorporate Aboveground Storage Tank regulations with UST regulations for uniform regulation under the DEP.  Currently these duties are split between the Fire Marshal’s Office and the DEP.

•    Streamline Chapter 691 Underground Storage Tank Regulations.

•    Direct, by legislative resolve, the DEP to develop a single set of rules regulating the storage of petroleum products in gravel pits and quarries subject to state regulation.

•    Remove the requirement that a water quality reserve of 15% be kept for new or changed discharges.  In the past 20 years, there have been very few new dischargers in Maine.

Land Use Regulation Commission

•    Require that not less than 30% of the LURC jurisdiction be zoned for development.

•    Remove the “demonstrated need” requirement from LURC statutes.

•    Require that LURC eliminate the adjacency criterion from its rules and Comprehensive Land Use Plan.

•    Direct LURC to re-write the Comprehensive Land Use Plan to be consistent with the statute.

•    Amend the LURC statutes to remove the prohibition on approving projects unless “adequate provision has been made for fitting the proposal harmoniously into the existing natural environment in order to ensure there will be no undue adverse effect on existing uses, scenic character, and natural and historic resources…”.

Other Natural Resources Agencies

•    Change the reporting structure of the Board of Pesticide Control staff to have them report to the Department of Agriculture staff, eliminate their director and assign those responsibilities to an Agriculture staffer and remove the chain of reporting that goes through the board.

•    Require IF&W to provide comprehensive evidence of wildlife habitat before delaying projects for it.

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