AN ACT TO REVISE VARIOUS FEES AND FUNDS OF THE DEPARTMENT OF ENVIRONMENTAL QUALITY.
Adds the Riparian Buffer Restoration Fund to the special funds enumerated in GS 147-69.2(a) of which the State Treasurer is required to make investments with any cash in excess of the amount to meet the current needs and demands of the funds. Further amends GS 147-69.2, adding that investments made by the Treasurer from funds of the Ecosystem Restoration Fund and the Riparian Buffer Restoration Fund remain the funds of the Ecosystem Restoration Fund and the Riparian Buffer Restoration Fund, respectively, with interest or other investment income earned on the deposited funds prorated and credited to each respective fund as applicable.
Amends GS 130A-295.8, increasing the following annual permit fees for permitted solid waste management facilities: Treatment and Processing Facility from $500 to $1,500; Tire Monofill from $1,000 to $5,500; Incinerator from $500 to $1,500; Large Compost Facility from $500 to $1,500; and Land Clearing and Inert Debris Landfill from $500 to $1,000. Adds three annual permit fees: (1) $1,500 permit for structural fill project involving the placement of more than 8,000 tons of coal combustion products per acre or less than 80,000 tons of coal combustion products in total; (2) $4,500 permit for structural fill project involving the placement of 8,000 or more tons of coal combustion products per acre or 80,000 or more tons of coal combustion products in total; and (3) $500 permit for post-closure structural project involving the placement of 8,000 or more tons of coal combustion products per acre or 80,000 or more tons of coal combustion products in total.
Amends GS 143-215.104A, extending the sunset date of the Dry-Cleaning Solvent Cleanup Act (Act) from January 1, 2022, to January 1, 2032. Provides that any Dry-Cleaning Solvent Assessment Agreement or Dry-Cleaning Solvent Remediation Agreement in force as of January 1, 2032 (was, January 1, 2012) will continue to be governed by the Act (Part 6, Article 21A, of GS Chapter 143), as though the provisions had not been repealed. Makes clarifying changes.
Amends GS 143-215.104C, apportioning 3% (was, 1%) of the Dry-Cleaning Solvent Cleanup Fund balance each fiscal year for the Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) to investigate inactive hazardous substance disposal sites DEQ reasonably believes to be contaminated by dry-cleaning solvent.
Amends GS 143-215.104P, which is set to expire January 1, 2022, increasing the maximum civil penalty for any of the nine specified violations that involve a hazardous waste from $25,000 to $32,500, and from $25,000 a day to $32,500 a day for continuous violations that involve a hazardous waste. Maintains the existing cap for a penalty for a continuous violation at $200,000 for each period of 30 days during which the violation continues. Corrects statutory references.
Extends the sunset from July 1, 2020, to July 1, 2030, for GS 105-164.44E, regarding the transfer of 15% of the net State sales and use tax collected from dry cleaning and linen rental businesses under GS 105-164.4(a)(4) to the Dry-Cleaning Solvent Cleanup Fund.
Extends the sunset of Article 5D of GS Chapter 105 (Dry-Cleaning Solvent Tax) from January 1, 2020, to January 1, 2030.
Amends GS 143-215.73F(b) concerning the permitted uses of the Shallow Draft Navigation Channel Dredging and Aquatic Weed Fund. Allows for the compensation of two positions within DEQ, limited to 2% of funds credited to the Fund in each fiscal year: a beach and inlet management project manager and a manager to oversee financial management activities related to water resources development grants (previously, only allows for compensation for a beach and inlet project manager and limited funding for the position to $99,000 per year). Adds to the permitted uses, allowing the Fund to be used to conduct assessments and maintain a database of dredge material disposal sites, as defined, located in the State.
Amends GS 113A-232, adding to the existing purposes of the Conservation Grant Fund that the Fund is to steward properties held by deed or conservation easement by the State. Extends grant eligibility to conservation properties. Adds to the permitted uses of revenue in the Conservation Grant Fund, allowing for the use of the revenue for stewardship program operations and conservation contracts and agreements. Details conservation grants, contracts and agreements included in the authorization, many of which are borrowed language from GS 113A-233, which lists allowable uses of a grant received from the Fund. Makes organizational changes.
Retitles GS 113A-233, Uses of a grant from the Conservation Grant Endowment Account (was, the Conservation Grant Fund). Eliminates the previous allowable uses of a grant set out in subsection (a). Instead, limits all investment income generated by the Conservation Grant Fund by the permitted uses of its revenue set out in GS 113A-232(d), as amended, to those same permitted uses. Provides a further limitation prohibiting the account principal from being used to pay the purchase price of real property or an interest in real property.
Makes a technical change to GS 113A-234.
Retitles GS 113A-235, Conservation properties (was, Conservation easements). Transfers to new subsection (a) the existing language of GS 113A-232(c), as deleted, regarding property eligibility for a grant. Modifies and adds to the eligibility conditions, requiring the real property or real property interest be: reasonably restorable, previously restored, or a high-quality preservation (was limited to being reasonably restorable); be useful for watershed protection or improvement (was limited to watershed protection; one of seven purposes the property or interest must be useful for); and be purchased on behalf of, donated or assigned in perpetuity to, and accepted by the State, a local government, or a body that is both organized and qualified to receive and administer charitable lands (was limited to donation in perpetuity to and acceptance by the named entities). Further, authorizes DEQ to acquire conservation properties and easement by purchase, gift, or assignment in accordance with GS 146-22. Makes conforming and organizational changes.
Enacts GS 113A-236, requiring a contribution be made to the Conservation Grant Fund for conservation property interests donated or assigned to DEQ for the long-term management of the property. Directs the DEQ Secretary to establish procedures and adopt rules fo the calculation and collection of the minimum contribution to the Fund required.
Makes a technical correction to Section 14.3, SL 2015-241.
Provides for the act's effective date, July 1, 2019.
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