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United States Regulations
40 CFR PART 124—PROCEDURES FOR DECISIONMAKING
Title 40: Protection of Environment
PART 124—PROCEDURES FOR DECISIONMAKING
Authority: Resource Conservation and Recovery Act, 42 U.S.C. 6901 et seq.; Safe Drinking Water Act, 42 U.S.C. 300f et seq.; Clean Water Act, 33 U.S.C. 1251 et seq.; Clean Air Act, 42 U.S.C. 7401 et seq.
Source: 48 FR 14264, Apr. 1, 1983, unless otherwise noted.
Subpart A—General Program Requirements
§ 124.1 Purpose and scope.
(a) This part contains EPA procedures for issuing, modifying, revoking and reissuing, or terminating all RCRA, UIC, PSD and NPDES “permits” (including “sludge-only” permits issued pursuant to §122.1(b)(2) of this chapter. The latter kinds of permits are governed by part 270. RCRA interim status and UIC authorization by rule are not “permits” and are covered by specific provisions in parts 144, subpart C, and 270. This part also does not apply to permits issued, modified, revoked and reissued or terminated by the Corps of Engineers. Those procedures are specified in 33 CFR parts 320–327. The procedures of this part also apply to denial of a permit for the active life of a RCRA hazardous waste management facility or unit under §270.29.
(b) Part 124 is organized into five subparts. Subpart A contains general procedural requirements applicable to all permit programs covered by these provisions. Subparts B through D and Subpart G supplement these general provisions with requirements that apply to only one or more of the programs. Subpart A describes the steps EPA will follow in receiving permit applications, preparing draft permits, issuing public notice, inviting public comment and holding public hearings on draft permits. Subpart A also covers assembling an administrative record, responding to comments, issuing a final permit decision, and allowing for administrative appeal of the final permit decisions. Subpart B contains public participation requirements applicable to all RCRA hazardous waste management facilities. Subpart C contains definitions and specific procedural requirements for PSD permits. Subpart D contains specific procedural requirements for NPDES permits. Subpart G contains specific procedural requirements for RCRA standardized permits, which, in some instances, change how the General Program Requirements of subpart A apply in the context of the RCRA standardized permit.
(c) Part 124 offers an opportunity for public hearings (see §124.12).
(d) This part is designed to allow permits for a given facility under two or more of the listed programs to be processed separately or together at the choice of the Regional Administrator. This allows EPA to combine the processing of permits only when appropriate, and not necessarily in all cases. The Regional Administrator may consolidate permit processing when the permit applications are submitted, when draft permits are prepared, or when final permit decisions are issued. This part also allows consolidated permits to be subject to a single public hearing under §124.12. Permit applicants may recommend whether or not their applications should be consolidated in any given case.
(e) Certain procedural requirements set forth in part 124 must be adopted by States in order to gain EPA approval to operate RCRA, UIC, NPDES, and 404 permit programs. These requirements are listed in §§123.25 (NPDES), 145.11 (UIC), 233,26 (404), and 271.14 (RCRA) and signaled by the following words at the end of the appropriate part 124 section or paragraph heading: (applicable to State programs see §§123.25 (NPDES), 145.11 (UIC), 233.26 (404), and 271.14 (RCRA)). Part 124 does not apply to PSD permits issued by an approved State.
(f) To coordinate decisionmaking when different permits will be issued by EPA and approved State programs, this part allows applications to be jointly processed, joint comment periods and hearings to be held, and final permits to be issued on a cooperative basis whenever EPA and a State agree to take such steps in general or in individual cases. These joint processing agreements may be provided in the Memorandum of Agreement developed under §§123.24 (NPDES), 145.24 (UIC), 233.24 (404), and 271.8 (RCRA).
[48 FR 14264, Apr. 1, 1983, as amended at 54 FR 9607, Mar. 7, 1989; 54 FR 18785, May 2, 1989; 65 FR 30910, May 15, 2000; 70 FR 53448, Sept. 8, 2005]
§ 124.2 Definitions.
(a) In addition to the definitions given in §§122.2 and 123.2 (NPDES), 501.2 (sludge management), 144.3 and 145.2 (UIC), 233.3 (404), and 270.2 and 271.2 (RCRA), the definitions below apply to this part, except for PSD permits which are governed by the definitions in §124.41. Terms not defined in this section have the meaning given by the appropriate Act.
Administrator means the Administrator of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, or an authorized representative.
Application means the EPA standard national forms for applying for a permit, including any additions, revisions or modifications to the forms; or forms approved by EPA for use in “approved States,” including any approved modifications or revisions. For RCRA, application also includes the information required by the Director under §§270.14 through 270.29 [contents of Part B of the RCRA application].
Appropriate Act and regulations means the Clean Water Act (CWA); the Solid Waste Disposal Act, as amended by the Resource Conservation Recovery Act (RCRA); or Safe Drinking Water Act (SDWA), whichever is applicable; and applicable regulations promulgated under those statutes. In the case of an “approved State program” appropriate Act and regulations includes program requirements.
CWA means the Clean Water Act (formerly referred to as the Federal Water Pollution Control Act of Federal Pollution Control Act Amendments of 1972) Public Law 92–500, as amended by Public Law 95–217 and Public Law 95–576; 33 U.S.C. 1251 et seq.
Director means the Regional Administrator, the State director or the Tribal director as the context requires, or an authorized representative. When there is no approved State or Tribal program, and there is an EPA administered program, Director means the Regional Administrator. When there is an approved State or Tribal program, “Director” normally means the State or Tribal director. In some circumstances, however, EPA retains the authority to take certain actions even when there is an approved State or Tribal program. (For example, when EPA has issued an NPDES permit prior to the approval of a State program, EPA may retain jurisdiction over that permit after program approval; see §123.1) In such cases, the term “Director” means the Regional Administrator and not the State or Tribal director.
Draft permit means a document prepared under §124.6 indicating the Director's tentative decision to issue or deny, modify, revoke and reissue, terminate, or reissue a “permit.” A notice of intent to terminate a permit and a notice of intent to deny a permit as discussed in §124.5, are types of “draft permits.” A denial of a request for modification, revocation and reissuance or termination, as discussed in §124.5, is not a “draft permit.” A “proposal permit” is not a “draft permit.”
Environmental Appeals Board shall mean the Board within the Agency described in §1.25(e) of this title. The Administrator delegates authority to the Environmental Appeals Board to issue final decisions in RCRA, PSD, UIC, or NPDES permit appeals filed under this subpart, including informal appeals of denials of requests for modification, revocation and reissuance, or termination of permits under Section 124.5(b). An appeal directed to the Administrator, rather than to the Environmental Appeals Board, will not be considered. This delegation does not preclude the Environmental Appeals Board from referring an appeal or a motion under this subpart to the Administrator when the Environmental Appeals Board, in its discretion, deems it appropriate to do so. When an appeal or motion is referred to the Administrator by the Environmental Appeals Board, all parties shall be so notified and the rules in this subpart referring to the Environmental Appeals Board shall be interpreted as referring to the Administrator.
EPA (“EPA”) means the United States “Environmental Protection Agency.”
Facility or activity means any “HWM facility,” UIC “injection well,” NPDES “point source” or “treatment works treating domestic sewage” or State 404 dredge or fill activity, or any other facility or activity (including land or appurtenances thereto) that is subject to regulation under the RCRA, UIC, NPDES, or 404 programs.
Federal Indian reservation (in the case of NPDES) means all land within the limits of any Indian reservation under the jurisdiction of the United States Government, notwithstanding the issuance of any patent, and including rights-of-way running through the reservation.
General permit (NPDES and 404) means an NPDES or 404 “permit” authorizing a category of discharges or activities under the CWA within a geographical area. For NPDES, a general permit means a permit issued under §122.28. For 404, a general permit means a permit issued under §233.37.
Indian Tribe means (in the case of UIC) any Indian Tribe having a federally recognized governing body carrying out substantial governmental duties and powers over a defined area. For the NPDES program, the term “Indian Tribe” means any Indian Tribe, band, group, or community recognized by the Secretary of the Interior and exercising governmental authority over a Federal Indian reservation.
Interstate agency means an agency of two or more States established by or under an agreement or compact approved by the Congress, or any other agency of two or more States having substantial powers or duties pertaining to the control of pollution as determined and approved by the Administrator under the “appropriate Act and regulations.”
Major facility means any RCRA, UIC, NPDES, or 404 “facility or activity” classified as such by the Regional Administrator, or, in the case of “approved State programs,” the Regional Administrator in conjunction with the State Director.
Owner or operator means owner or operator of any “facility or activity” subject to regulation under the RCRA, UIC, NPDES, or 404 programs.
Permit means an authorization, license or equivalent control document issued by EPA or an “approved State” to implement the requirements of this part and parts 122, 123, 144, 145, 233, 270, and 271 of this chapter. “Permit” includes RCRA “permit by rule” (§270.60), RCRA standardized permit (§270.67), UIC area permit (§144.33), NPDES or 404 “general permit” (§§270.61, 144.34, and 233.38). Permit does not include RCRA interim status (§270.70), UIC authorization by rule (§144.21), or any permit which has not yet been the subject of final agency action, such as a “draft permit” or a “proposed permit.”
Person means an individual, association, partnership, corporation, municipality, State, Federal, or Tribal agency, or an agency or employee thereof.
RCRA means the Solid Waste Disposal Act as amended by the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act of 1976 (Pub. L. 94–580, as amended by Pub. L. 95–609, 42 U.S.C. 6901 et seq).
Regional Administrator means the Regional Administrator of the appropriate Regional Office of the Environmental Protection Agency or the authorized representative of the Regional Administrator.
Schedule of compliance means a schedule of remedial measures included in a “permit,” including an enforceable sequence of interim requirements (for example, actions, operations, or milestone events) leading to compliance with the “appropriate Act and regulations.”
SDWA means the Safe Drinking Water Act (Pub. L. 95–523, as amended by Pub. L. 95–1900; 42 U.S.C. 300f et seq).
Section 404 program or State 404 program or 404 means an “approved State program” to regulate the “discharge of dredged material” and the “discharge of fill material” under section 404 of the Clean Water Act in “State regulated waters.”
Site means the land or water area where any “facility or activity” is physically located or conducted, including adjacent land used in connection with the facility or activity.
Standardized permit means a RCRA permit authorizing management of hazardous waste issued under subpart G of this part and part 270, subpart J. The standardized permit may have two parts: A uniform portion issued in all cases and a supplemental portion issued at the Director's discretion.
State means one of the States of the United States, the District of Columbia, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands, Guam, American Samoa, the Trust Territory of the Pacific Islands (except in the case of RCRA), the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, or an Indian Tribe that meets the statutory criteria which authorize EPA to treat the Tribe in a manner similar to that in which it treats a State (except in the case of RCRA).
State Director means the chief administrative officer of any State, interstate, or Tribal agency operating an approved program, or the delegated representative of the State director. If the responsibility is divided among two or more States, interstate, or Tribal agencies, “State Director” means the chief administrative officer of the State, interstate, or Tribal agency authorized to perform the particular procedure or function to which reference is made.
State Director means the chief administrative officer of any State or interstate agency operating an “approved program,” or the delegated representative of the state Director. If responsibility is divided among two or more State or interstate agencies, “State Director” means the chief administrative officer of the State or interstate agency authorized to perform the particular procedure or function to which reference is made.
UIC means the Underground Injection Control program under Part C of the Safe Drinking Water Act, including an “approved program.”
(b) For the purposes of part 124, the term Director means the State Director or Regional Administrator and is used when the accompanying provision is required of EPA-administered programs and of State programs under §§123.25 (NPDES), 145.11 (UIC), 233.26 (404), and 271.14 (RCRA). The term Regional Administrator is used when the accompanying provision applies exclusively to EPA-issued permits and is not applicable to State programs under these sections. While States are not required to implement these latter provisions, they are not precluded from doing so, notwithstanding use of the term “Regional Administrator.”
[48 FR 14264, Apr. 1, 1983; 48 FR 30115, June 30, 1983, as amended at 49 FR 25981, June 25, 1984; 53 FR 37410, Sept. 26, 1988; 54 FR 18785, May 2, 1989; 57 FR 5335, Feb. 13, 1992; 57 FR 60129, Dec. 18, 1992; 58 FR 67983, Dec. 22, 1993; 59 FR 64343, Dec. 14, 1994; 65 FR 30910, May 15, 2000; 70 FR 53449, Sept. 8, 2005]
§ 124.3 Application for a permit.
(a) Applicable to State programs, see §§123.25 (NPDES), 145.11 (UIC), 233.26 (404), and 271.14 (RCRA). (1) Any person who requires a permit under the RCRA, UIC, NPDES, or PSD programs shall complete, sign, and submit to the Director an application for each permit required under §§270.1 (RCRA), 144.1 (UIC), 40 CFR 52.21 (PSD), and 122.1 (NPDES). Applications are not required for RCRA permits by rule (§270.60), underground injections authorized by rules (§§144.21 through 144.26), NPDES general permits (§122.28) and 404 general permits (§233.37).
(2) The Director shall not begin the processing of a permit until the applicant has fully complied with the application requirements for that permit. See §§270.10, 270.13 (RCRA), 144.31 (UIC), 40 CFR 52.21 (PSD), and 122.21 (NPDES).
(3) Permit applications (except for PSD permits) must comply with the signature and certification requirements of §§122.22 (NPDES), 144.32 (UIC), 233.6 (404), and 270.11 (RCRA).
(c) The Regional Administrator shall review for completeness every application for an EPA-issued permit. Each application for an EPA-issued permit submitted by a new HWM facility, a new UIC injection well, a major PSD stationary source or major PSD modification, or an NPDES new source or NPDES new discharger should be reviewed for completeness by the Regional Administrator within 30 days of its receipt. Each application for an EPA-issued permit submitted by an existing HWM facility (both Parts A and B of the application), existing injection well or existing NPDES source or sludge-only facility should be reviewed for completeness within 60 days of receipt. Upon completing the review, the Regional Administrator shall notify the applicant in writing whether the application is complete. If the application is incomplete, the Regional Administrator shall list the information necessary to make the application complete. When the application is for an existing HWM facility, an existing UIC injection well or an existing NPDES source or “sludge-only facility” the Regional Administrator shall specify in the notice of deficiency a date for submitting the necessary information. The Regional Administrator shall notify the applicant that the application is complete upon receiving this information. After the application is completed, the Regional Administrator may request additional information from an applicant but only when necessary to clarify, modify, or supplement previously submitted material. Requests for such additional information will not render an application incomplete.
(d) If an applicant fails or refuses to correct deficiencies in the application, the permit may be denied and appropriate enforcement actions may be taken under the applicable statutory provision including RCRA section 3008, SDWA sections 1423 and 1424, CAA section 167, and CWA sections 308, 309, 402(h), and 402(k).
(e) If the Regional Administrator decides that a site visit is necessary for any reason in conjunction with the processing of an application, he or she shall notify the applicant and a date shall be scheduled.
(f) The effective date of an application is the date on which the Regional Administrator notifies the applicant that the application is complete as provided in paragraph (c) of this section.
(g) For each application from a major new HWM facility, major new UIC injection well, major NPDES new source, major NPDES new discharger, or a permit to be issued under provisions of §122.28(c), the Regional Administrator shall, no later than the effective date of the application, prepare and mail to the applicant a project decision schedule. (This paragraph does not apply to PSD permits.) The schedule shall specify target dates by which the Regional Administrator intends to:
(1) Prepare a draft permit;
(2) Give public notice;
(3) Complete the public comment period, including any public hearing; and
(4) Issue a final permit.
(Clean Water Act (33 U.S.C. 1251 et seq.), Safe Drinking Water Act (42 U.S.C. 300f et seq.), Clean Air Act (42 U.S.C. 7401 et seq.), Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (42 U.S.C. 6901 et seq.))
[48 FR 14264, Apr. 1, 1983, as amended at 48 FR 39620, Sept. 1, 1983; 54 FR 18785, May 2, 1989; 65 FR 30910, May 15, 2000]
§ 124.4 Consolidation of permit processing.
(a)(1) Whenever a facility or activity requires a permit under more than one statute covered by these regulations, processing of two or more applications for those permits may be consolidated. The first step in consolidation is to prepare each draft permit at the same time.
(2) Whenever draft permits are prepared at the same time, the statements of basis (required under §124.7 for EPA-issued permits only) or fact sheets (§124.8), administrative records (required under §124.9 for EPA-issued permits only), public comment periods (§124.10), and any public hearings (§124.12) on those permits should also be consolidated. The final permits may be issued together. They need not be issued together if in the judgment of the Regional Administrator or State Director(s), joint processing would result in unreasonable delay in the issuance of one or more permits.
(b) Whenever an existing facility or activity requires additional permits under one or more of the statutes covered by these regulations, the permitting authority may coordinate the expiration date(s) of the new permit(s) with the expiration date(s) of the existing permit(s) so that all permits expire simultaneously. Processing of the subsequent applications for renewal permits may then be consolidated.
(c) Processing of permit applications under paragraph (a) or (b) of this section may be consolidated as follows:
(1) The Director may consolidate permit processing at his or her discretion whenever a facility or activity requires all permits either from EPA or from an approved State.
(2) The Regional Administrator and the State Director(s) may agree to consolidate draft permits whenever a facility or activity requires permits from both EPA and an approved State.
(3) Permit applicants may recommend whether or not the processing of their applications should be consolidated.
(e) Except with the written consent of the permit applicant, the Regional Administrator shall not consolidate processing a PSD permit with any other permit under paragraph (a) or (b) of this section when to do so would delay issuance of the PSD permit more than one year from the effective date of the application under §124.3(f).
[48 FR 14264, Apr. 1, 1983, as amended at 65 FR 30910, May 15, 2000]
§ 124.5 Modification, revocation and reissuance, or termination of permits.
(a) (Applicable to State programs, see §§123.25 (NPDES), 145.11 (UIC), 233.26 (404), and 271.14 (RCRA).) Permits (other than PSD permits) may be modified, revoked and reissued, or terminated either at the request of any interested person (including the permittee) or upon the Director's initiative. However, permits may only be modified, revoked and reissued, or terminated for the reasons specified in §122.62 or §122.64 (NPDES), 144.39 or 144.40 (UIC), 233.14 or 233.15 (404), and 270.41 or 270.43 (RCRA). All requests shall be in writing and shall contain facts or reasons supporting the request.
(b) If the Director decides the request is not justified, he or she shall send the requester a brief written response giving a reason for the decision. Denials of requests for modification, revocation and reissuance, or termination are not subject to public notice, comment, or hearings. Denials by the Regional Administrator may be informally appealed to the Environmental Appeals Board by a letter briefly setting forth the relevant facts. The Environmental Appeals Board may direct the Regional Administrator to begin modification, revocation and reissuance, or termination proceedings under paragraph (c) of this section. The appeal shall be considered denied if the Environmental Appeals Board takes no action on the letter within 60 days after receiving it. This informal appeal is, under 5 U.S.C. 704, a prerequisite to seeking judicial review of EPA action in denying a request for modification, revocation and reissuance, or termination.
(c) (Applicable to State programs, see 40 CFR 123.25 (NPDES), 145.11 (UIC), 233.26 (404), and 271.14 (RCRA)). (1) If the Director tentatively decides to modify or revoke and reissue a permit under 40 CFR 122.62 (NPDES), 144.39 (UIC), 233.14 (404), or 270.41 (other than §270.41(b)(3)) or §270.42(c) (RCRA), he or she shall prepare a draft permit under §124.6 incorporating the proposed changes. The Director may request additional information and, in the case of a modified permit, may require the submission of an updated application. In the case of revoked and reissued permits, other than under 40 CFR 270.41(b)(3), the Director shall require the submission of a new application. In the case of revoked and reissued permits under 40 CFR 270.41(b)(3), the Director and the permittee shall comply with the appropriate requirements in 40 CFR part 124, subpart G for RCRA standardized permits.
(2) In a permit modification under this section, only those conditions to be modified shall be reopened when a new draft permit is prepared. All other aspects of the existing permit shall remain in effect for the duration of the unmodified permit. When a permit is revoked and reissued under this section, the entire permit is reopened just as if the permit had expired and was being reissued. During any revocation and reissuance proceeding the permittee shall comply with all conditions of the existing permit until a new final permit is reissued.
(3) “Minor modifications” as defined in §§122.63 (NPDES), 144.41 (UIC), and 233.16 (404), and “Classes 1 and 2 modifications” as defined in §270.42 (a) and (b) (RCRA) are not subject to the requirements of this section.
(d) (Applicable to State programs, see §§123.25 (NPDES) of this chapter, 145.11 (UIC) of this chapter, and 271.14 (RCRA) of this chapter.) (1) If the Director tentatively decides to terminate: A permit under §144.40 (UIC) of this chapter, a permit under §§122.64(a) (NPDES) of this chapter or 270.43 (RCRA) of this chapter (for EPA-issued NPDES permits, only at the request of the permittee), or a permit under §122.64(b) (NPDES) of this chapter where the permittee objects, he or she shall issue a notice of intent to terminate. A notice of intent to terminate is a type of draft permit which follows the same procedures as any draft permit prepared under §124.6 of this chapter.
(2) For EPA-issued NPDES or RCRA permits, if the Director tentatively decides to terminate a permit under §122.64(a) (NPDES) of this chapter, other than at the request of the permittee, or decides to conduct a hearing under section 3008 of RCRA in connection with the termination of a RCRA permit, he or she shall prepare a complaint under 40 CFR 22.13 and 22.44 of this chapter. Such termination of NPDES and RCRA permits shall be subject to the procedures of part 22 of this chapter.
(3) In the case of EPA-issued permits, a notice of intent to terminate or a complaint shall not be issued if the Regional Administrator and the permittee agree to termination in the course of transferring permit responsibility to an approved State under §§123.24(b)(1) (NPDES) of this chapter, 145.25(b)(1) (UIC) of this chapter, 271.8(b)(6) (RCRA) of this chapter, or 501.14(b)(1) (sludge) of this chapter. In addition, termination of an NPDES permit for cause pursuant to §122.64 of this chapter may be accomplished by providing written notice to the permittee, unless the permittee objects.
(e) When EPA is the permitting authority, all draft permits (including notices of intent to terminate) prepared under this section shall be based on the administrative record as defined in §124.9.
(f) (Applicable to State programs, see §233.26 (404).) Any request by the permittee for modification to an existing 404 permit (other than a request for a minor modification as defined in §233.16 (404)) shall be treated as a permit application and shall be processed in accordance with all requirements of §124.3.
(g)(1) (Reserved for PSD Modification Provisions).
(2) PSD permits may be terminated only by rescission under §52.21(w) or by automatic expiration under §52.21(r). Applications for rescission shall be precessed under §52.21(w) and are not subject to this part.
[48 FR 14264, Apr. 1, 1983, as amended at 53 FR 37934, Sept. 28, 1988; 54 FR 18785, May 2, 1989; 57 FR 60129, Dec. 18, 1992; 65 FR 30910, May 15, 2000; 70 FR 53449, Sept. 8, 2005]
§ 124.6 Draft permits.
(a) (Applicable to State programs, see §§123.25 (NPDES), 145.11 (UIC), 233.26 (404), and 271.14 (RCRA).) Once an application is complete, the Director shall tentatively decide whether to prepare a draft permit (except in the case of State section 404 permits for which no draft permit is required under §233.39) or to deny the application.
(b) If the Director tentatively decides to deny the permit application, he or she shall issue a notice of intent to deny. A notice of intent to deny the permit application is a type of draft permit which follows the same procedures as any draft permit prepared under this section. See §124.6(e). If the Director's final decision (§124.15) is that the tentative decision to deny the permit application was incorrect, he or she shall withdraw the notice of intent to deny and proceed to prepare a draft permit under paragraph (d) of this section.
(c) (Applicable to State programs, see §§123.25 (NPDES) and 233.26 (404).) If the Director tentatively decides to issue an NPDES or 404 general permit, he or she shall prepare a draft general permit under paragraph (d) of this section.
(d) (Applicable to State programs, see §§123.25 (NPDES), 145.11 (UIC), 233.26 (404), and 271.14 (RCRA).) If the Director decides to prepare a draft permit, he or she shall prepare a draft permit that contains the following information:
(1) All conditions under §§122.41 and 122.43 (NPDES), 144.51 and 144.42 (UIC, 233.7 and 233.8 (404, or 270.30 and 270.32 (RCRA) (except for PSD permits)));
(2) All compliance schedules under §§122.47 (NPDES), 144.53 (UIC), 233.10 (404), or 270.33 (RCRA) (except for PSD permits);
(3) All monitoring requirements under §§122.48 (NPDES), 144.54 (UIC), 233.11 (404), or 270.31 (RCRA) (except for PSD permits); and
(i) RCRA permits, standards for treatment, storage, and/or disposal and other permit conditions under §270.30;
(ii) UIC permits, permit conditions under §144.52;
(iii) PSD permits, permit conditions under 40 CFR §52.21;
(iv) 404 permits, permit conditions under §§233.7 and 233.8;
(v) NPDES permits, effluent limitations, standards, prohibitions, standards for sewage sludge use or disposal, and conditions under §§122.41, 122.42, and 122.44, including when applicable any conditions certified by a State agency under §124.55, and all variances that are to be included under §124.63.
(e) (Applicable to State programs, see §§123.25 (NPDES), 145.11 (UIC), 233.26 (404), and 271.14 (RCRA).) All draft permits prepared by EPA under this section shall be accompanied by a statement of basis (§124.7) or fact sheet (§124.8), and shall be based on the administrative record (§124.9), publicly noticed (§124.10) and made available for public comment (§124.11). The Regional Administrator shall give notice of opportunity for a public hearing (§124.12), issue a final decision (§124.15) and respond to comments (§124.17). For RCRA, UIC or PSD permits, an appeal may be taken under §124.19 and, for NPDES permits, an appeal may be taken under §124.74. Draft permits prepared by a State shall be accompanied by a fact sheet if required under §124.8.
[48 FR 14264, Apr. 1, 1983, as amended at 54 FR 18785, May 2, 1989; 65 FR 30910, May 15, 2000]
§ 124.7 Statement of basis.
EPA shall prepare a statement of basis for every draft permit for which a fact sheet under §124.8 is not prepared. The statement of basis shall briefly describe the derivation of the conditions of the draft permit and the reasons for them or, in the case of notices of intent to deny or terminate, reasons supporting the tentative decision. The statement of basis shall be sent to the applicant and, on request, to any other person.
§ 124.8 Fact sheet.
(Applicable to State programs, see §§123.25 (NPDES), 145.11 (UIC), 233.26 (404), and 271.14 (RCRA).)
(a) A fact sheet shall be prepared for every draft permit for a major HWM, UIC, 404, or NPDES facility or activity, for every Class I sludge management facility, for every 404 and NPDES general permit (§§237.37 and 122.28), for every NPDES draft permit that incorporates a variance or requires an explanation under §124.56(b), for every draft permit that includes a sewage sludge land application plan under 40 CFR 501.15(a)(2)(ix), and for every draft permit which the Director finds is the subject of wide-spread public interest or raises major issues. The fact sheet shall briefly set forth the principal facts and the significant factual, legal, methodological and policy questions considered in preparing the draft permit. The Director shall send this fact sheet to the applicant and, on request, to any other person.
(b) The fact sheet shall include, when applicable:
(1) A brief description of the type of facility or activity which is the subject of the draft permit;
(2) The type and quantity of wastes, fluids, or pollutants which are proposed to be or are being treated, stored, disposed of, injected, emitted, or discharged.
(3) For a PSD permit, the degree of increment consumption expected to result from operation of the facility or activity.
(4) A brief summary of the basis for the draft permit conditions including references to applicable statutory or regulatory provisions and appropriate supporting references to the administrative record required by §124.9 (for EPA-issued permits);
(5) Reasons why any requested variances or alternatives to required standards do or do not appear justified;
(6) A description of the procedures for reaching a final decision on the draft permit including:
(i) The beginning and ending dates of the comment period under §124.10 and the address where comments will be received;
(ii) Procedures for requesting a hearing and the nature of that hearing; and
(iii) Any other procedures by which the public may participate in the final decision.
(7) Name and telephone number of a person to contact for additional information.
(8) For NPDES permits, provisions satisfying the requirements of §124.56.
(9) Justification for waiver of any application requirements under §122.21(j) or (q) of this chapter.
[48 FR 14264, Apr. 1, 1983, as amended at 54 FR 18786, May 2, 1989; 64 FR 42470, Aug. 4, 1999]
§ 124.9 Administrative record for draft permits when EPA is the permitting authority.
(a) The provisions of a draft permit prepared by EPA under §124.6 shall be based on the administrative record defined in this section.
(b) For preparing a draft permit under §124.6, the record shall consist of:
(1) The application, if required, and any supporting data furnished by the applicant;
(2) The draft permit or notice of intent to deny the application or to terminate the permit;
(3) The statement of basis (§124.7) or fact sheet (§124.8);
(4) All documents cited in the statement of basis or fact sheet; and
(5) Other documents contained in the supporting file for the draft permit.
(6) For NPDES new source draft permits only, any environmental assessment, environmental impact statement (EIS), finding of no significant impact, or environmental information document and any supplement to an EIS that may have been prepared. NPDES permits other than permits to new sources as well as all RCRA, UIC and PSD permits are not subject to the environmental impact statement provisions of section 102(2)(C) of the National Environmental Policy Act, 42 U.S.C. 4321.
(c) Material readily available at the issuing Regional Office or published material that is generally available, and that is included in the administrative record under paragraphs (b) and (c) of this section, need not be physically included with the rest of the record as long as it is specifically referred to in the statement of basis or the fact sheet.
(d) This section applies to all draft permits when public notice was given after the effective date of these regulations.
§ 124.10 Public notice of permit actions and public comment period.
(a) Scope. (1) The Director shall give public notice that the following actions have occurred:
(i) A permit application has been tentatively denied under §124.6(b);
(ii) (Applicable to State programs, see §§123.25 (NPDES), 145.11 (UIC), 233.26 (404), and 271.14 (RCRA).) A draft permit has been prepared under §124.6(d);
(iii) (Applicable to State programs, see §§123.25 (NPDES), 145.11 (UIC), 233.26 (404) and 271.14 (RCRA)).) A hearing has been scheduled under §124.12;
(iv) An appeal has been granted under §124.19(c);
(v) (Applicable to State programs, see §233.26 (404).) A State section 404 application has been received in cases when no draft permit will be prepared (see §233.39); or
(vi) An NPDES new source determination has been made under §122.29.
(2) No public notice is required when a request for permit modification, revocation and reissuance, or termination is denied under §124.5(b). Written notice of that denial shall be given to the requester and to the permittee.
(3) Public notices may describe more than one permit or permit actions.
(b) Timing (applicable to State programs, see §§123.25 (NPDES), 145.11 (UIC), 233.26 (404, and 271.14 (RCRA)). (1) Public notice of the preparation of a draft permit (including a notice of intent to deny a permit application) required under paragraph (a) of this section shall allow at least 30 days for public comment. For RCRA permits only, public notice shall allow at least 45 days for public comment. For EPA-issued permits, if the Regional Administrator determines under 40 CFR part 6, subpart F that an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) shall be prepared for an NPDES new source, public notice of the draft permit shall not be given until after a draft EIS is issued.
(2) Public notice of a public hearing shall be given at least 30 days before the hearing. (Public notice of the hearing may be given at the same time as public notice of the draft permit and the two notices may be combined.)
(c) Methods (applicable to State programs, see §§123.25 (NPDES), 145.11 (UIC), 233.26 (404), and 271.14 (RCRA)). Public notice of activities described in paragraph (a)(1) of this section shall be given by the following methods:
(1) By mailing a copy of a notice to the following persons (any person otherwise entitled to receive notice under this paragraph may waive his or her rights to receive notice for any classes and categories of permits);
(i) The applicant (except for NPDES and 404 general permits when there is no applicant);
(ii) Any other agency which the Director knows has issued or is required to issue a RCRA, UIC, PSD (or other permit under the Clean Air Act), NPDES, 404, sludge management permit, or ocean dumping permit under the Marine Research Protection and Sanctuaries Act for the same facility or activity (including EPA when the draft permit is prepared by the State);
(iii) Federal and State agencies with jurisdiction over fish, shellfish, and wildlife resources and over coastal zone management plans, the Advisory Council on Historic Preservation, State Historic Preservation Officers, including any affected States (Indian Tribes). (For purposes of this paragraph, and in the context of the Underground Injection Control Program only, the term State includes Indian Tribes treated as States.)
(iv) For NPDES and 404 permits only, any State agency responsible for plan development under CWA section 208(b)(2), 208(b)(4) or 303(e) and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the National Marine Fisheries Service;
(v) For NPDES permits only, any user identified in the permit application of a privately owned treatment works;
(vi) For 404 permits only, any reasonably ascertainable owner of property adjacent to the regulated facility or activity and the Regional Director of the Federal Aviation Administration if the discharge involves the construction of structures which may affect aircraft operations or for purposes associated with seaplane operations;
(vii) For PSD permits only, affected State and local air pollution control agencies, the chief executives of the city and county where the major stationary source or major modification would be located, any comprehensive regional land use planning agency and any State, Federal Land Manager, or Indian Governing Body whose lands may be affected by emissions from the regulated activity;
(viii) For Class I injection well UIC permits only, state and local oil and gas regulatory agencies and state agencies regulating mineral exploration and recovery;
(ix) Persons on a mailing list developed by:
(A) Including those who request in writing to be on the list;
(B) Soliciting persons for “area lists” from participants in past permit proceedings in that area; and
(C) Notifying the public of the opportunity to be put on the mailing list through periodic publication in the public press and in such publications as Regional and State funded newsletters, environmental bulletins, or State law journals. (The Director may update the mailing list from time to time by requesting written indication of continued interest from those listed. The Director may delete from the list the name of any person who fails to respond to such a request.)
(x)(A) To any unit of local government having jurisdiction over the area where the facility is proposed to be located; and (B) to each State agency having any authority under State law with respect to the construction or operation of such facility.
(2)(i) For major permits, NPDES and 404 general permits, and permits that include sewage sludge land application plans under 40 CFR 501.15(a)(2)(ix), publication of a notice in a daily or weekly newspaper within the area affected by the facility or activity; and for EPA-issued NPDES general permits, in the Federal Register;
Note: The Director is encouraged to provide as much notice as possible of the NPDES or Section 404 draft general permit to the facilities or activities to be covered by the general permit.
(ii) For all RCRA permits, publication of a notice in a daily or weekly major local newspaper of general circulation and broadcast over local radio stations.
(3) When the program is being administered by an approved State, in a manner constituting legal notice to the public under State law; and
(4) Any other method reasonably calculated to give actual notice of the action in question to the persons potentially affected by it, including press releases or any other forum or medium to elicit public participation.
(d) Contents (applicable to State programs, see §§123.25 (NPDES), 145.11 (UIC), 233.26 (404), and 271.14 (RCRA))—(1) All public notices. All public notices issued under this part shall contain the following minimum information:
(i) Name and address of the office processing the permit action for which notice is being given;
(ii) Name and address of the permittee or permit applicant and, if different, of the facility or activity regulated by the permit, except in the case of NPDES and 404 draft general permits under §§122.28 and 233.37;
(iii) A brief description of the business conducted at the facility or activity described in the permit application or the draft permit, for NPDES or 404 general permits when there is no application.
(iv) Name, address and telephone number of a person from whom interested persons may obtain further information, including copies of the draft permit or draft general permit, as the case may be, statement of basis or fact sheet, and the application; and
(v) A brief description of the comment procedures required by §§124.11 and 124.12 and the time and place of any hearing that will be held, including a statement of procedures to request a hearing (unless a hearing has already been scheduled) and other procedures by which the public may participate in the final permit decision.
(vi) For EPA-issued permits, the location of the administrative record required by §124.9, the times at which the record will be open for public inspection, and a statement that all data submitted by the applicant is available as part of the administrative record.
(vii) For NPDES permits only (including those for “sludge-only facilities”), a general description of the location of each existing or proposed discharge point and the name of the receiving water and the sludge use and disposal practice(s) and the location of each sludge treatment works treating domestic sewage and use or disposal sites known at the time of permit application. For EPA-issued NPDES permits only, if the discharge is from a new source, a statement as to whether an environmental impact statement will be or has been prepared.
(viii) For 404 permits only,
(A) The purpose of the proposed activity (including, in the case of fill material, activities intended to be conducted on the fill), a description of the type, composition, and quantity of materials to be discharged and means of conveyance; and any proposed conditions and limitations on the discharge;
(B) The name and water quality standards classification, if applicable, of the receiving waters into which the discharge is proposed, and a general description of the site of each proposed discharge and the portions of the site and the discharges which are within State regulated waters;
(C) A description of the anticipated environmental effects of activities conducted under the permit;
(D) References to applicable statutory or regulatory authority; and
(E) Any other available information which may assist the public in evaluating the likely impact of the proposed activity upon the integrity of the receiving water.
(ix) Requirements applicable to cooling water intake structures under section 316(b) of the CWA, in accordance with part 125, subparts I and J, of this chapter.
(x) Any additional information considered necessary or proper.
(2) Public notices for hearings. In addition to the general public notice described in paragraph (d)(1) of this section, the public notice of a hearing under §124.12 shall contain the following information:
(i) Reference to the date of previous public notices relating to the permit;
(ii) Date, time, and place of the hearing;
(iii) A brief description of the nature and purpose of the hearing, including the applicable rules and procedures; and
(iv) For 404 permits only, a summary of major issues raised to date during the public comment period.
(e) (Applicable to State programs, see §§123.25 (NPDES), 145.11 (UIC), 233.26 (404), and 271.14 (RCRA).) In addition to the general public notice described in paragraph (d)(1) of this section, all persons identified in paragraphs (c)(1) (i), (ii), (iii), and (iv) of this section shall be mailed a copy of the fact sheet or statement of basis (for EPA-issued permits), the permit application (if any) and the draft permit (if any).
[48 FR 14264, Apr. 1, 1983; 48 FR 30115, June 30, 1983, as amended at 53 FR 28147, July 26, 1988; 53 FR 37410, Sept. 26, 1988; 54 FR 258, Jan. 4, 1989; 54 FR 18786, May 2, 1989; 65 FR 30911, May 15, 2000; 66 FR 65338, Dec. 18, 2001; 69 FR 41683, July 9, 2004]
§ 124.11 Public comments and requests for public hearings.
(Applicable to State programs, see §§123.25 (NPDES), 145.11 (UIC), 233.26 (404), and 271.14 (RCRA).) During the public comment period provided under §124.10, any interested person may submit written comments on the draft permit or the permit application for 404 permits when no draft permit is required (see §233.39) and may request a public hearing, if no hearing has already been scheduled. A request for a public hearing shall be in writing and shall state the nature of the issues proposed to be raised in the hearing. All comments shall be considered in making the final decision and shall be answered as provided in §124.17.
§ 124.12 Public hearings.
(a) (Applicable to State programs, see §§123.25 (NPDES), 145.11 (UIC), 233.26 (404), and 271.14 (RCRA).) (1) The Director shall hold a public hearing whenever he or she finds, on the basis of requests, a significant degree of public interest in a draft permit(s);
(2) The Director may also hold a public hearing at his or her discretion, whenever, for instance, such a hearing might clarify one or more issues involved in the permit decision;
(3) For RCRA permits only, (i) the Director shall hold a public hearing whenever he or she receives written notice of opposition to a draft permit and a request for a hearing within 45 days of public notice under §124.10(b)(1); (ii) whenever possible the Director shall schedule a hearing under this section at a location convenient to the nearest population center to the proposed facility;
(4) Public notice of the hearing shall be given as specified in §124.10.
(b) Whenever a public hearing will be held and EPA is the permitting authority, the Regional Administrator shall designate a Presiding Officer for the hearing who shall be responsible for its scheduling and orderly conduct.
(c) Any person may submit oral or written statements and data concerning the draft permit. Reasonable limits may be set upon the time allowed for oral statements, and the submission of statements in writing may be required. The public comment period under §124.10 shall automatically be extended to the close of any public hearing under this section. The hearing officer may also extend the comment period by so stating at the hearing.
(d) A tape recording or written transcript of the hearing shall be made available to the public.
[48 FR 14264, Apr. 1, 1983, as amended at 49 FR 17718, Apr. 24, 1984; 50 FR 6941, Feb. 19, 1985; 54 FR 258, Jan. 4, 1989; 65 FR 30911, May 15, 2000]
§ 124.13 Obligation to raise issues and provide information during the public comment period.
All persons, including applicants, who believe any condition of a draft permit is inappropriate or that the Director's tentative decision to deny an application, terminate a permit, or prepare a draft permit is inappropriate, must raise all reasonably ascertainable issues and submit all reasonably available arguments supporting their position by the close of the public comment period (including any public hearing) under §124.10. Any supporting materials which are submitted shall be included in full and may not be incorporated by reference, unless they are already part of the administrative record in the same proceeding, or consist of State or Federal statutes and regulations, EPA documents of general applicability, or other generally available reference materials. Commenters shall make supporting materials not already included in the administrative record available to EPA as directed by the Regional Administrator. (A comment period longer than 30 days may be necessary to give commenters a reasonable opportunity to comply with the requirements of this section. Additional time shall be granted under §124.10 to the extent that a commenter who requests additional time demonstrates the need for such time.) (continued)