AN ACT TO REFORM AND AMEND THE STATE ENVIRONMENTAL POLICY ACT.
Amends GS 113A-4 to require every state agency to include a detailed statement as to the direct environmental impact (was, environmental impact) of any proposed action that involves a significant expenditure of public funds or use of public land for projects that significantly affect the quality of the environment of this state. Provides that an agency that fails to utilize the comment period to make comments under this section or request an extension of time to prepare its comments is to be assumed to have concluded that there is no significant environmental impact expected from the proposed action.
Amends GS 113A-9 modifies the definition for public lands and amends "use of public land" to mean land disturbing activity of greater than 20 acres resulting in substantial, permanent changes in the natural cover or topography. Adds a definition for "significant expenditure of public moneys" meaning expenditures of public funds that are greater than $20 million for a single project or action, or a related group of projects orations.
Amends GS 113A-10 to provide that the provisions of Article 1, GS Chapter 113A do not require the preparation of a separate environmental document as long as the environmental document or comment meets the provisions of this Article.
Amends GS 113A-11 to require that each state agency shall (was, may) adopt rules that establish minimum criteria and no longer makes these rules subject to approval by the Secretary of Administration.
Expands the provisions of GS 113A-12, which lists certain cases in which no environmental document is required.
Deletes all the requirements in GS 159G-38 regarding an environmental assessment but retains provision permitting the Division of Water Infrastructure to hold a public hearing on an application for a loan or grant under this Article if the Division determines that holding the hearing serves the public interest.
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