Continuing our countdown of new Illinois environmental laws taking effect on January 1, 2016 is Public Act 99-0463, under which the Illinois Pollution Control Board is required to adopt regulations establishing Clean Air Act permit programs for Prevention of Significant Deterioration (PSD) and Nonattainment New Source Review (NA NSR) permits.
This new law amends several sections of the Illinois Environmental Protection Act, which had previously stated that the Pollution Control Board “may” adopt regulations establishing PSD and NA NSR permit programs. Now, the law says that the Board “shall” adopt those regulations:
“The Board shall adopt regulations establishing permit programs for PSD and NA NSR permits meeting the respective requirements of Sections 165 and 173 of the Clean Air Act (42 USC 7475 and 42 USC 7503) as amended. The Agency may adopt procedures for the administration of such programs. The regulations adopted by the Board to establish a PSD permit program shall incorporate by reference, pursuant to subsection (a) of Section 5-75 of the Illinois Administrative Procedure Act, the provisions of 40 CFR 52.21, except for the following subparts: (a)(1) Plan disapproval, (q) Public participation, (s) Environmental impact statements, (t) Disputed permits or redesignations and (u) Delegation of authority; the Board may adopt more stringent or additional provisions to the extent it deems appropriate. To the extent that the provisions of 40 CFR 52.21 provide for the Administrator to make various determinations and to take certain actions, these provisions shall be modified to indicate the Agency if appropriate. Nothing in this subsection shall be construed to limit the right of any person to submit a proposal to the Board or the authority of the Board to adopt elements of a PSD permit program that are more stringent than those contained in 40 CFR 52.21, pursuant to the rulemaking requirements of Title VII of this Act and Section 5-35 of the Illinois Administrative Procedure Act.”
The new law also requires that the Board shall provide for public participation in the permit process, as well as a process for permit applicants to challenge the decision of the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency of whether or not to grant a particular permit.