UPDATE 2 – Regulatory Relief in the Environmental Arena Lags Behind

LDEQ issued an amended Declaration of Emergency and Administrative Order on March 27, 2020. In terms of regulatory relief, it offers little more than prior orders.

LDEQ extended the deadline for submitting Title V Semiannual Monitoring and Deviation reports and Annual Compliance Certifications, which are ordinarily required to be submitted on March 31. They must be submitted no later than May 1, 2020. LDEQ did state that it maintains the capability to physically receive reports to the extent that the reports can be submitted to the Department by the March 31st deadline.

As to any reports to be submitted to the EPA, LDEQ advises that they should be submitted in accordance with the directions provided in “COVID-19 Implications for EPA’s Enforcement and Compliance Assurance Program,” issued by the EPA on March 26, 2020. See https://www.bswllp.com/update-regulatory-relief-in-the-environmental-arena-lags-behind for additional information about EPA’s policy regarding enforcement discretion.

LDEQ noted that the order does not suspend emergency reporting requirements under the regulations or permit requirements.

Finally, LDEQ will not assess any late fees for outstanding invoices beginning March 19, 2020 until the expiration of this Order. Further, LDEQ stated that waste tire generators must continue to submit their monthly waste tire reports by the 20th of the month following the month in which the tires were sold, but no late report or payment fees will be assessed for the February 2020 (due 3/20/2020) or March 2020 (due 4/20/2020) reports.

John B. King is a partner with Breazeale, Sachse & Wilson LLP in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. His practice relates mainly to environmental regulatory permitting and compliance. Prior to joining the firm in 2003, he served as chief attorney for enforcement for the Louisiana Department of Environmental Quality. For more information, check http://www.bswenviroblog.com, or contact John B. King at jbk@bswllp.com or (225) 381-8014.

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