Michigan Seeks to Expand UST Cleanup Funding

By Brian Eggers

This legislation will provide funding for many of the State’s older UST releases, while also providing municipalities and developers with financial tools for redevelopment cleanups.

On October 10, 2017, the Michigan Legislature completed passage of Michigan House Bill 4583. If signed into law by the Governor, this legislation will require the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality (MDEQ) to establish the “Legacy Release Program”, which would be administered by the Michigan Underground Storage Tank Authority (MUSTA – www.michigan.gov/deqmusta).

Under the Legacy Release Program, the allowable uses of the Refined Petroleum Fund (RPF) would be expanded to include 1) reimbursements of up to $200,000 to local units of government for cleanup of roadway construction refuse regulated under Michigan’s Part 213 Program, 2) up to $5 million per year in Brownfield Redevelopment grants for sites that need corrective action under Part 213, and 3) reimbursements to eligible underground storage tank (UST) operators of up to $50,000 for leaks that occurred before December of 2014.

The RPF generates approximately $57 million per year by capturing one cent for every gallon of refined petroleum sold in Michigan. The first $20 million is allocated to the MUSTA, thereby providing owners and operators with a method to insure against releases and cleanup costs related to regulated USTs. The remaining $37 million of the RPF is allocated to the MDEQ, the Michigan Department of Agriculture & Rural Development (Motor Fuel Quality and Weights & Measures) and the Michigan Department of Licensing & Regulatory Affairs for UST-related expenses.

If signed into law, this legislation will provide significant funding for many of Michigan’s older UST releases that have not as yet been adequately addressed, and it will provide municipalities and developers with the financial tools to overcome legacy contamination issues.

For more information, the October 10th version of the Michigan Senate Fiscal Agency’s analysis of the legislation can be found here: http://www.legislature.mi.gov/documents/2017-2018/billanalysis/Senate/pdf/2017-SFA-4583-A.pdf

If you should have any questions about Michigan’s Legacy Release Program or for assistance with your UST management, please contact me directly at 989-239-5786 or via email at eggersb@aktpeerless.com, or AKT Peerless UST specialist Jon Hirschenberger at 989-928-1417 or via email at hirschenbergerj@aktpeerless. com.

About the Author

Brian EggersBrian Eggers is a Co-Founder & Principal of AKT Peerless with nearly three decades of professional environmental and engineering consulting experience for private and government sector clients. His areas of expertise include the redevelopment of environmentally challenged properties, economic development financing, brownfield program management, and UST systems. He also contributes significantly in multiple board and committee roles as a business advocate for policy and governance across this spectrum.

About AKT Peerless

We are environmental consultants, building scientists and redevelopment experts who are proud to help build sustainable communities. Our services – environmental, energy, sustainability, economic development incentives, and construction loan consulting – are tailored to the needs of each of our clients. We solve problems and deliver value on projects of any size, anywhere, and we empower our people to engage, at work and in our communities, to make a difference. We succeed because our clients and communities succeed. Call us at 800-985-7633 for help with practical solutions.

NEXT ARTICLE