H. B. 4277
(By Delegate Lane, Armstead, McCuskey and Raines)
[Introduced January 23, 2014; referred to the
Committee on the Judiciary then Finance.]
A BILL to amend the Code of West Virginia, 1931, as amended; by adding thereto a new section, designated §22-11-31, relating to reporting above-ground storage tanks in proximity to flowing waters; providing for civil penalties and injunctive relief.
Be it enacted by the Legislature of West Virginia:
That the Code of West Virginia, 1931, as amended, be amended and reenacted by adding thereto a new section, designated §22-11-31, to read as follows:
ARTICLE 11. WATER POLLUTION CONTROL ACT.
§22-11-31. Aboveground storage tank registry.
(a) "Above-ground storage tank" means any tank or container within one mile of a river, stream, lake or pond where ninety percent or more of the tank volume is located above the ground surface, but does not include farm or residential tanks or containers with a capacity of eleven hundred gallons or less and used for noncommercial purposes.
(b) “Operator” means any person in control of, or having responsibility for, the daily operation of an above-ground storage tank.
(c) “Owner” means a person who owns an above-ground storage tank used for the storage of any fluid.
(d) To assure protection of the water resources of the state, the secretary shall compile an inventory of above-ground storage tanks and their contents in existence on the effective date of this section. The secretary shall complete the inventory and report the inventory findings to the Speaker of the House, the Minority Leader of the House, the President of the Senate and the Minority Leader of the Senate within thirty days of the effective date of this section.
(e) Within fifteen days of the effective date of this section owners or operators shall register each above-ground storage tank and provide an inventory of its contents to the secretary.
(f) Any owner or operator who fails to register as required in this section, shall be subject to a civil penalty of $1,000 per day for each above-ground storage tank not timely registered and administrative injunction against continuing operations until the owner or operator registers.
(g) All costs associated with compliance with the provisions of this section shall be tax deductible.
(h) All water providers in each public service district shall provide risk assessments for water contamination in each public service district. The assessments shall be completed and submitted to the secretary within sixty days of the effective date of this section.
(i) The purposes of this section are that any data derived be used purely for information gathering and future water protection policy development.
NOTE: The purpose of this bill is to require registration and inventory of existing above-ground storage tanks and to direct the Secretary of the Department of Environmental Protection to report the inventory to the Legislature.
This section is new; therefore, it has been completely underscored.