Enhances the reporting requirements for the storage or use of hazardous materials by businesses, outside of a city having a population of one million or more.
TITLE OF BILL: An act to amend the general municipal law, in relation to requiring businesses to notify the local firefighting agency of the presence of hazardous materials
PURPOSE: The bill would enhance and improve the reporting requirements for businesses which store or use hazardous materials.
SUMMARY OF SPECIFIC PROVISIONS: The bill amends subdivision 3, 5, and 6 of Section 209-u of the General Municipal Law to make the following changes:
*Requires each person engaged in commerce to provide identification and quantity of each hazardous material used or stored at each site. Persons that do not use or store hazardous materials must respond to the notice with such information;
*Requires every municipality (town or city), except a city having a population of one million or more, to provide annual notification in writing to all persons engaged in commerce within their jurisdiction of the notification and, other hazardous materials reporting requirements in this law,. The notification may be provided with tax bills or other official notifications;
*Requires any person granted a reporting exemption, except in a city having a population of one million or more, to immediately notify the chief of the fire department, fire corporation or fire company of any changes in the identity of the hazardous materials and the amounts used or stored at each site;
*Requires that persons claiming the need to protect confidential business information must still report this hazardous materials data to the fire department, corporation or company. Such information will be subject to the Freedom of Information Law with respect to public release of such information.
JUSTIFICATION: Some fire companies have reported that they still have little or no information about hazardous materials stored at businesses within their response territories, despite the requirements of the current law. This lack of information puts our fire fighters, first response and emergency personnel at significant risk from unknown exposures to hazardous materials at these facilities. The proposed amendments to the bill will ensure that every business facility provides detailed information about hazardous materials they use or store, including identification and quantity of each material. Businesses that do not use or store hazardous materials must provide a response to that effect. Additionally every municipality must send notice of the reporting requirements to every person in commerce in their community; such notice may be included with other official mailings from the municipality. This procedure should ensure that all appropriate parties know of their responsibilities with respect to hazardous materials.
The bill also strengthens the exemptions provisions of the current law. All of the changes should significantly improve knowledge of hazardous materials stored and used within these communities and
enhance municipal response to fires and other hazardous events at such facilities.
LEGISLATIVE HISTORY: 2010 - S.8162A - Died - Rules 2012 - S.2826 Died - Local Government
FISCAL IMPLICATIONS: Little or no cost to local governments.
EFFECTIVE DATE: This act would take effect 30 days after it becomes law.
STATE OF NEW YORK ________________________________________________________________________ 4573 2013-2014 Regular Sessions IN SENATE April 11, 2013 ___________Introduced by Sen. STEWART-COUSINS -- read twice and ordered printed, and when printed to be committed to the Committee on Local Government AN ACT to amend the general municipal law, in relation to requiring businesses to notify the local firefighting agency of the presence of hazardous materials THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK, REPRESENTED IN SENATE AND ASSEM- BLY, DO ENACT AS FOLLOWS: Section 1. Subdivisions 3, 5 and 6 of section 209-u of the general municipal law, subdivision 3 as amended by chapter 23 of the laws of 1991, and subdivisions 5 and 6 as amended by chapter 594 of the laws of 1986, are amended and a new subdivision 3-a is added to read as follows: 3. Every person engaged in commerce in this state, excepting those operating as a farm, as defined by subdivision one of section six hundred seventy-one of the labor law who, based upon the experience of the business in the use of hazardous materials during the previous year, may have possession of hazardous materials at a permanent place of busi- ness, a construction site or a temporary storage depot, shall report the presence of such hazardous materials to the chief of the appropriate fire department, fire corporation, or fire company having responsibility for fire protection of each location at which any such hazardous materi- al may be found. EACH SUCH PERSON SHALL PROVIDE THE IDENTIFICATION AND QUANTITY OF EACH HAZARDOUS MATERIAL USED OR STORED AT EACH SITE WHICH IS NOT WITHIN A CITY HAVING A POPULATION OF ONE MILLION OR MORE. SUCH PERSONS THAT DO NOT STORE OR USE HAZARDOUS MATERIALS MUST RESPOND TO THE NOTICE BY STATING NO SUCH MATERIALS ARE STORED OR USED. Upon receipt thereof, in counties which have an office of county fire coordinator, the fire department, fire corporation or fire company, shall forward a copy of said report to the office of the county fire coordinator. 3-A. EVERY CITY AND TOWN, EXCEPT A CITY HAVING A POPULATION OF ONE MILLION OR MORE, SHALL ANNUALLY PROVIDE NOTICE IN WRITING TO ALL PERSONS ENGAGED IN COMMERCE WITHIN ITS JURISDICTION OF THE NOTIFICATION ANDEXPLANATION--Matter in ITALICS (underscored) is new; matter in brackets [ ] is old law to be omitted. LBD02585-01-3 S. 4573 2
REPORTING REQUIREMENTS, RELATING TO HAZARDOUS MATERIALS, OF THIS SECTION. SUCH NOTICE MAY BE INCLUDED IN TAX BILLS OR OTHER OFFICIAL COMMUNICATIONS. 5. An exemption from the provisions of subdivision three of this section may be granted by the chief of the fire department, fire corpo- ration, or fire company where, in cooperation with or at the invitation of the person, he OR SHE chooses to make or causes his OR HER represen- tative to make an inspection of the person's place of business. At the time of such inspection the person is required to inform the chief or his OR HER representative of any hazardous materials which are subject to the provisions of this section. IF ANY PERSON GRANTED AN EXEMPTION PURSUANT TO THIS SUBDIVISION CHANGES THE HAZARDOUS MATERIALS USED OR STORED AT SUCH PLACE OF BUSINESS WHICH IS NOT WITHIN A CITY HAVING A POPULATION OF ONE MILLION OR MORE, SUCH PERSON SHALL IMMEDIATELY NOTIFY THE CHIEF OF THE FIRE DEPARTMENT, FIRE CORPORATION OR FIRE COMPANY OF SUCH CHANGE INCLUDING THE IDENTITY OF THE HAZARDOUS MATERIALS AND THE AMOUNTS THEREOF USED OR STORED. Failure to inform shall constitute a violation as set forth in subdivision eight of this section. 6. Exemptions from the provisions of subdivision three of this section may also be granted by said chief
[as follows: (a) a general exemption]if the PERSON DEMONSTRATES firefighting capability [of the person is]sufficient to defend against an emergency involving such hazardous mate- rial [; (b) an exemption, based upon the need for confidentiality, from the reporting of specific hazardous materials]. REQUESTS FOR EXEMPTION FROM PUBLIC DISCLOSURE OF THE HAZARDOUS MATERIALS USED OR STORED AT THE PLACE OF BUSINESS SHALL BE SUBJECT TO THE PROVISIONS OF ARTICLE SIX OF THE PUBLIC OFFICERS LAW. Requests for exemptions shall be in writing and shall be filed annually with said chief. Such exemptions shall be filed with said chief and in counties which have an office of county fire coordinator, a copy of said exemption shall be forwarded by said chief to the office of county fire coordinator on a date to be determined by the state fire administrator in the manner prescribed by the state fire administrator. Exemptions shall be in writing and shall expire one year from the date granted. An exemption may be revoked if the conditions provided in [paragraph (a) or (b) of]this subdivision no longer exist. S 2. This act shall take effect on the thirtieth day after it shall have become a law.