The California Chamber of Commerce yesterday added a recently amended bill to its job killer list, bringing the total number of job killers to 26. The bill, SB 774 (Leyva; D-Chino), will establish the California Toxic Substances Board (CTSB) within the Department of Toxic Substances Control (DTSC).
The job killing proposal requires DTSC to adopt a new fee schedule by January 1, 2019 “at a rate sufficient to reimburse the department’s costs to implement” its statutory requirements.
In the opposition letter, CalChamber explains that this will result in significant new and additional costs being imposed on permittees as evidenced by the existing structural deficits in both the Hazardous Waste Control Account and the Toxic Substances Control Account (see Assembly Appropriations Committee’s analysis) – which are the two primary sources of funding for DTSC – and the estimated $3 million annually plus the significant yet unknown one-time costs relating to SB 774.
CalChamber’s analysis of the bill finds that SB 774 will create an additional bureaucratic layer that will not promote efficient and effective permitting or site cleanup. The authority, duties and powers vested in the CTSB make clear that it is not just an “oversight board.” The new “collaboration” requirement in the amendments will have no practical effect other than to drive up costs that will be passed through to permittees.
The bill has been tagged a job killer because it bypasses public participation and input by allowing DTSC to adopt future fee schedules as “emergency” regulations when such regulations will have significant impacts on permittees’ ability to continue to provide vital services to California communities.
SB 774 also creates significant uncertainty by giving the CTSB the power to disregard the administrative record and allowing it to impose conditions on hazardous waste permits and require various actions relating to site cleanup following a single hearing, and stating the director “shall comply” with such directives.
In the opposition letter, CalChamber warns that SB 774 will “result in the hazardous waste being sent out of state, where the waste would be treated as garbage and thus subject to few if any environmental protections, contrary to California’s goals.”
SB 774 will be heard in the Assembly Environmental Safety and Toxic Materials Committee today.
CalChamber is urging members to contact their Assembly representatives and ask them to oppose SB 774 as a job killer.
Staff Contact: Louinda V. Lacey