By Colin Connor, Plews Shadley Racher & Braun LLP
With the General Assembly session ending soon, now is a good time to check in on several environmental bills. Keep an eye out to see if these bills are enacted before the session closes on April 29.
House Bill 1278 would make many changes to environmental regulations, including: 1) adding one representative of the construction industry and one representative of the general public to the environmental rules board; 2) requiring certain public water system reports be submitted to the Indiana Department of Environmental Management (“IDEM”) electronically; 3) eliminating record keeping requirements for solid waste transported out of state for final disposal; 4) providing a 45-day deadline for the administrator of the underground petroleum storage tank excess liability trust fund (“ELTF”) to act on an ELTF claim; and 5) authorizing the environmental rules board to increase environmental fees. The bill passed the House unanimously on February 18, 2019. An amended bill passed the Senate unanimously and was returned to the House on April 16, 2019. On April 18, 2019, the House dissented from the Senate amendments.
House Bill 1279 would make many changes to conservancy districts, including permitting a conservancy district to be established as a reservoir conservancy district. The bill would also provide that except for intentional or willful and wanton misconduct a reservoir conservancy district, and the utility that owns the reservoir, would not be liable for any personal injury, death, property damage, or other loss that an individual incurs while present at the reservoir. The bill passed the House on February 5, 2019. It passed the Senate with amendments on April 11, 2019. On April 15, 2019, the House dissented from the Senate amendments.
Senate Bill 442 would authorize the establishment of a carbon sequestration pilot project to store carbon dioxide at a proposed production facility and transport it into underground formations as an alternative to releasing it into the air. The bill passed the Senate on February 26, 2019. It passed the House with amendments on March 25, 2019. On March 28, 2019, the Senate dissented from the House amendments.
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