Wednesday, April 23, 2008

What Will EPA Decide by When

Now that it's clear the State of Washington has made its recommendation to include the bulk of the metro area into a Wapato Hills-Puyallup Valley Non-attainment Area for PM2.5, the questions are what will EPA decide to do and by when?

EPA is required (Section 107(d)(1)) of the Clean Air Act to notify states no later than 120 days prior to the signature date for designations if it will modify the states recommendations. Signature on final designations is due by December 18, 2008. Therefore if the Agency (Administrator) modifies designation recommendations, it will send letters to those states where it intends to modify in July of 2008.

States will then have an opportunity to explain why they think EPA's modification is not appropriate (has been by letter, informally in the past). EPA is saying it will not be publishing a proposed notice and soliciting comments. The administrator's signature will be on its final action.

EPA will publish a final rule soon after the Administrator's signature (expect in January 2009 or late December 2008 depending on when the designations are signed). That rule will be effective 90 days later, likely in March 2009.

Monday, April 14, 2008

Capping the CAPO

The City of Tacoma has received a 60-day extension from the Growth Management Hearings Board for the purpose of conducting a second public hearing before the Tacoma Planning Commission. Below is an updated schedule for completion of the CAPO update.

The Planning Commission has set a public hearing on April 16, 2008 at 5:00 p.m.

April 2
Planning Commission - Authorize Public Distribution of Revised CAPO Regulations; Set Public Hearing date

April 16
Planning Commission Public Hearing

April 25
Planning Commission Public Comment Period Ends

May 7
Planning Commission discussion of testimony

May 21
Planning Commission Recommendation to City Council

June 3
City Council Study Session on draft CAPO regulations and Commission’s Recommendations

June 10
City Council Public Hearing on draft CAPO regulations

June 17
1st Reading of Ordinance

June 24
2nd Reading of Ordinance/Adoption

July 1
Deadline for City Council action

This process has been moving very quickly. The Chamber and numerous businesses had recommended an extension of the CAPO development period so that unintended consequences,, conflicts and duplicative regulations would not be imposed.

The community has made a lot of progress in crafting the revised CAPO, click on "Critical Areas Preservation Ordinance." However, there are still some outstanding issues and concerns and this extension will allow the City to hold an additional public comment period in which the City can listen and respond constructively to additional input.

Please feel free to contact staff Molly Harris at 253-591-5383 or Stephen Atkinson at 253-591-5531 if you have any questions or concerns.