WSR 23-10-036
[Filed April 27, 2023, 12:49 p.m., effective June 1, 2023]
Effective Date of Rule: June 1, 2023.
Purpose: The operating permit program fees, like the other fee programs of the Puget Sound Clean Air Agency (agency) (registration, notice of construction, and asbestos), are designed to recover the costs implementing and administering the program. A significant change to the operating permit fee schedule in Regulation I, Section 7.07 was made one year ago, recognizing the cumulative effects of inflation. Prior to the increase adopted in support of the fiscal year (FY) 2023 budget, the last across-the-board fee increases were made in 2012.
The current proposed changes are intended to further adjust fees to keep the revenues in balance with the level of effort to complete the compliance work associated with the operating permit program. While the revenue and expenses for the operating permit program have been roughly balanced for most of the past 10 years, the increasing costs to the program in the last two years and increasing level of effort for some types of work by the agency for certain aspects of the operating permit program need to be addressed through another adjustment to the fee schedule to ensure the agency does not reach a deficit condition.
The proposed amendments to the operating permit fee schedule include cost increases for each base fee category at approximately 17 percent. The consumer price index increase since the last operating permit fee increase is eight percent (up 16 percent over the past two years). The proposed increase anticipates the effects of inflation will not readily ease and this proposal assumes the inflationary effects through the FY 2024 time period (and the calendar year 2024 time period) will continue well into 2023. The lag between proposed fee increases and the actual billings that reflects that revenue have also been considered in this proposal. The emission fees, a $/ton fee for reportable air pollutant emissions levels, are proposed to remain unchanged. This recommendation regarding emission fee charges remaining unchanged will keep the emission fee charges equivalent to those for registration program sources. Additionally, no changes are proposed for the fee elements that relate to permit issuance transactions.
Citation of Rules Affected by this Order: Amending Regulation I, Section 7.07 (Operating Permit Fees).
Statutory Authority for Adoption: Chapter 70A.15 RCW.
Adopted under notice filed as WSR 23-05-108 on February 15, 2023.
Date Adopted: April 27, 2023.
Christine Cooley
Executive Director
SECTION 7.07 OPERATING PERMIT FEESAdopted 10/28/93 (766) Revised 09/08/94 (798), 09/14/95 (821), 09/12/96 (839), 09/11/97 (856), 09/10/98 (871), 09/09/99 (894), 07/13/00 (925), 06/14/01 (946), 10/11/01 (957), 05/23/02 (970), 05/22/03 (995), 07/22/04 (1031), 05/22/08 (1119), 05/24/12 (1244), 09/26/13 (1286), 04/28/22 (1449)
(a) The Agency shall assess annual operating permit fees as set forth in Section 7.07(b) below to cover the cost of administering the operating permit program.
(b) Upon assessment by the Agency, the following annual operating permit fees are due and payable within 45 days of the invoice date. They shall be deemed delinquent if not fully paid within 90 days of the date of the invoice and will be subject to an additional delinquent fee equal to 25% of the original fee, not to exceed $8,125. In addition, persons knowingly under-reporting emissions or other information used to set fees, or persons required to pay emission or permit fees who are more than 90 days late with such payments may be subject to a penalty equal to 3 times the amount of the original fee owed (in addition to other penalties provided by chapter 70A.15 RCW).
(1) Sources in the following North American Industry Classification System (NAICS) codes (North American Industry Classification System Manual, U.S. Executive Office of the President, Office of Management and Budget, 2012), or sources subsequently determined by the control officer to be assigned to either Section 7.07 (b)(1)(i) or 7.07 (b)(1)(ii) shall be subject to the following facility fees:
(i) Operating permit sources with the following NAICS codes:
NAICS Description Fee
Fossil Fuel Electric Power Generation
Petroleum Refineries
Glass Container Manufacturing
Cement Manufacturing
Iron and Steel Mills and Ferroalloy
Aircraft Manufacturing
Other Aircraft Parts and Auxiliary Equipment Manufacturing
National Security
. . . .$((71,500))83,650
(ii) Operating permit sources with the following NAICS codes:
NAICS Description Fee
Other Animal Food Manufacturing
Commercial Bakeries
Cut Stock, Resawing Lumber, and Planing
Other Millwork (including Flooring)
All Other Miscellaneous Wood Product Manufacturing
Paper Bag and Coated and Treated Paper
Polystyrene Foam Product Manufacturing
Fabricated Pipe and Pipe Fitting Manufacturing
. . . .$((17,875))20,910
(iii) Operating permit sources with NAICS codes other than listed above. . . .$((35,750))41,830
(2) Additional emission rate fees shall be paid in addition to the annual operating permit fees of Section 7.07 (b)(1):
$30 for each ton of CO reported in the previous calendar year, and
$60 for each ton of NOx reported in the previous calendar year, and
$60 for each ton of PM10 reported in the previous calendar year, and
$60 for each ton of SOx reported in the previous calendar year, and
$60 for each ton of VOC reported in the previous calendar year, and
$60 for each ton of HAP reported in the previous calendar year.
(c) In addition to the fees under Sections 7.07 (b)(1) and (b)(2) above, the Agency shall, on a source-by-source basis, assess the following fees:
(1) $500 for administrative permit amendments [WAC 173-401-720], and
(2) for minor permit modifications [WAC 173-401-725 (2) and (3)], a fee equal to 10% of the annual operating permit fee, not to exceed $8,125, and
(3) for the original issuance [WAC 173-401-700], significant modification [WAC 173-401-725(4)], reopening for cause [WAC 173-401-730], or renewal [WAC 173-401-710] of an operating permit, a fee equal to 20% of the annual operating permit fee, not to exceed $16,250, and
(4) to cover the costs of public involvement under WAC 173-401-800, and
(5) to cover the costs incurred by the Washington State Department of Health in enforcing 40 CFR Part 61, Subpart I and chapter 246-247 WAC.
(d) In addition to the fees described under Sections 7.07 (b) and (c) above, the Agency shall collect and transfer to the Washington State Department of Ecology a surcharge established by the Department of Ecology under chapter 173-401 WAC to cover the Department of Ecology's program development and oversight costs.
(e) Continued payment to the Agency of the annual operating permit fee maintains the operating permit and the status of the source as an operating facility.
Reviser's note: The brackets and enclosed material in the text of the above section occurred in the copy filed by the agency and appear in the Register pursuant to the requirements of RCW 34.08.040.