Permit Criteria Roundtables

In October 2015, Governor Jerry Brown signed into law Senate Bill 673. The bill was authored by southern California Senator Ricardo Lara to improve DTSC's permitting process and consider including additional criteria to address community concerns.Five major areas of concern were identified in the law:

  • The need to create clear and objective criteria for making denial/revocation decision that are based on valid standards or performance and risk;
  • A clear standard for violations that would lead to a denial or revocation;
  • The need to document, maintain and implement effective financial assurances standards to ensure that facilities can meet their permitted obligations.
  • The need for the Department to document and measure a "scoreboard" of attributes that would be perceived as a "good result" for the permitting program;and
  • The need to identify and measure appropriate permitting process timelines.

DTSC chose to implement SB 673 by dividing the regulations into two tracks

Track 1 will develop permit criteria for compliance history, data for a community profile, financial responsibility, training for facility personnel, and a health risk assessment for facility operations. 

Track 2 will address criteria for vulnerable populations, cumulative impacts, and setback distances from locations, such as schools, daycare centers and hospitals. Cumulative impact assessments may be used to determine health impacts related to multiple and long-term exposures to pollutants in the community. Criteria will need to account for factors that disproportionately affect the susceptibility and vulnerability of minority and low income communities. 

To help guide this process DTSC is hosting symposia and workshops throughout the State. The public is invited and encouraged to attend.

Track 1 brief description and links:

Under SB 673, the Department of Toxic Substances Control must adopt regulations to update permit criteria by January of 2018. The law requires the clarification and development of new processes to evaluate how approval of a hazardous waste permit may potentially impact human health and environment. The following seven elements and concepts are pivotal in the revised regulations:

  • A process to score the compliance history of a hazardous waste facility
  • A process to complete a health risk assessment for a hazardous waste facility
  • Amending regulations to change the timing of CEQA information submittals to the Department
  • Amending regulations to clarify when a facility owner/operator must demonstrate compliance with financial assurance for corrective action;
  • Creating a new requirement for a hazardous waste facility owner/operator to complete a community profile that describes the ethnic and socioeconomic factors, interest level in the proposed facility and known community concerns regarding the operation of the facility.
  • Creating a new requirement for a hazardous waste facility owner/operator to submit an annual certification of training provided to facility employees.
  • Setting criteria for permit determination based on compliance history, financial assurance and a health risk assessment.

Track 2 brief description and links:

DTSC is hosting two Permit Criteria symposia this Spring and several subsequent roundtables in an effort to guide their SB 673 implementation process. SB 673 requires that DTSC consider criteria for vulnerable populations, cumulative impacts, and setback distances from locations for sensitive receptors, such as schools, daycare centers, and hospitals. Meaningful public participation and best available science will be important to the development of cumulative impact standards and policy considerations for issuance of a hazardous waste facility permit.

DTSC encourages you to participate in both symposia and all subsequent roundtables either in person or on the web.  Please register for the event below:

SB 673

Click here to register for the March 27 Symposium

For more information contact Corey Yep at permits_hwm@dtsc.ca.gov