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2020 Agriculture and Environment Bill Watch List

 

Bad Bills:

Jump to: Good Bills, Watching

 

SB73: Reports of potential violations to IDEM

Authors: Sen. James Tomes (R)

Status: In the Senate Environmental Affairs Committee

Position: CAC opposes this bill

Description:

SB73 is an anti-whistleblower bill. It authorizes the Indiana Department of Environmental Management (IDEM) to receive reports from the public regarding potential environmental violations. It requires that the person submitting the report provide their name and address. It further requires IDEM to provide the identity of the whistleblower to the alleged violator. This will almost certainly deter people from reporting environmental violations.

 

SB130: Residential sewage discharging disposal systems

Authors: Sen. Dennis Kruse (R)

Status: In the Senate Environmental Affairs Committee

Position: CAC opposes this bill

Description:

Makes changes to the process to issue permits for onsite residential sewage discharging disposal systems that are installed to repair failed septic systems in certain counties. Weakens environmental regulations related to septic tanks.

 

SB229: Maintenance of regulated drains

Authors: Sen. Victoria Spartz (R), Sen. Blake Doriot (R)

Status: In the Senate

Position: CAC opposes this bill

Votes:

Description:

Provides that a permit is not required from the Indiana Department of Environmental Management for the reconstruction or maintenance of regulated drains for purposes of the law concerning state regulated wetlands. SB229 deregulates the drain pipes that drain into Indiana wetlands. This will almost certainly result in more toxins being dumped into Indiana waterways.

 

 

Good Bills:

Jump to: Bad Bills, Watching

 

HB1257: Notice of environmental contamination

Authors: Rep. Pat Boy (D), Rep. Sue Errington (D)

Status: In the House Environmental Affairs Committee

Position: CAC supports this bill

Description:

Requires a person who causes a toxic spill into Indiana's waterways immediately report the spill to the following: (1) The Indiana Department of Environmental Management (IDEM); (2) The county health officer of each county in which the spill occurred; (3) A downstream water user (large water users, particularly water utilities); (4) At least one emergency response agency; and (5) Each park located in the county in which the spill occurred. Requires IDEM, the county health officer, the downstream water user, the emergency response agency, and each park (entity) to: (1) post the information received about the spill on each entity's Internet web site; and (2) make the information received about the spill available to the public.

Requires the person who caused the spill to immediately provide notice by publication to the public in each county in which the spill occurred. Establishes a civil penalty of not more than $25,000 for each day that the person fails to make the report or provide the notice required by the bill. If the entity causing the spill has previous violations, the penalty can be up to $50,000 per day. Provides that a person who fails to make the report or provide the notice required by the bill commits a Class A misdemeanor. Specifies that a person commits a Level 6 felony if the person has a prior unrelated conviction for a violation of the reporting and notification requirements added by the bill.

 

HB1265: Drinking water testing in Lake County

Authors: Rep. Carolyn Jackson (D), Rep. David Wolkins (D)

Status: In the House Environmental Affairs Committee

Position: CAC supports this bill

Description:

Drinking water testing in Lake County. Requires that the drinking water in every child care center, child care home, child care ministry site, child care program site, child caring institution, and school building be tested before January 1, 2023, for compliance with the national primary drinking water regulations for lead and copper. Provides, however, that the testing requirement is satisfied if the drinking water of the child care facility or school building has already been tested for compliance with the national primary drinking water regulations at least once since 2016. Provides that if a test of the drinking water of a child care facility or school building indicates the presence of lead in the water equal to or greater than the federal lead action level of 15 parts per billion, the person or entity having authority over the child care facility or school building is required to take action to reduce the lead levels in the drinking water to less than 15 parts per billion.

 

HB1357: Independent testing of Lake Michigan water

Authors: Rep. Ragen Hatcher (D)

Status: In the House Environmental Affairs Committee

Position: CAC supports this bill

Description:

Requires the commissioner of the Indiana Department of Environmental Management to engage an independent testing service to test and analyze the Indiana waters of Lake Michigan and report to the commissioner the results of its testing and analysis at least four times per year. Provides that the independent testing service must test and analyze the Indiana waters of Lake Michigan for the presence and concentration of pollutants that are known to constitute the greatest environmental problems for the Indiana waters of Lake Michigan. Requires that the results of the testing and analysis be made available to the public.

 

HB1415: Regulated drains and environmental concerns

Authors: Rep. Carey Hamilton (D)

Status: In the House Local Government Committee

Position: CAC supports this bill

Description:

Authorizes a county surveyor to classify a regulated drain as a drain in need of reconstruction if: (1) the functionality of the drain is compromised; and (2) the drain could, at a reasonable cost, be reconstructed to perform the function for which it was designed while better serving the interests of public health, significantly reducing undesirable environmental effects, or providing flood reduction benefits.

Authorizes a county surveyor to classify a regulated drain as a drain in need of periodic maintenance if the drain can be made to: (1) perform the function for which it was designed and constructed; (2) properly drain affected land; and (3) better serve the interest of public health, produce fewer undesirable environmental effects, or provide flood reduction benefits; through periodically cleaning, spraying, removing obstructions from, and making minor repairs, additions, or alterations to the regulated drain.

Provides that the maintenance fund established for a regulated drain or combination of regulated drains may be used to: (1) better serve the interests of public health; (2) reduce undesirable environmental effects; (3) provide flood reduction benefits; (4) improve drainage control; or (5) provide drainage water storage infrastructure or technology associated with water that flows in or into a particular regulated drain or combination of regulated drains.

 

 

SB104: Designated wild areas in state forests

Authors: Sen. Mark Stoops (D)

Status: In the Senate Natural Resources Committee

Position: CAC supports this bill

Description:

Provides that 13 specified areas within certain state forests are "designated wild areas". Specifies certain activities that are prohibited or allowed within a designated wild area. Establishes responsibilities for the Indiana Department of Natural Resources (DNR) and divisions of the DNR that manage designated wild areas.

 

SB214: Testing of school drinking water for lead

Authors: Sen. Lonnie Randolph (D), Sen. Rick Niemeyer (R)

Status: In the Senate Environmental Affairs Committee

Position: CAC supports this bill

Description:

Requires testing of the drinking water in every school building in Lake County at least once in each period of two calendar years to determine whether the drinking water exceeds the lead action level for drinking water established by regulations of the United States Environmental Protection Agency.

 

SB276: SPEA study of low-carbon and green industries

Authors: Sen. Tim Lanane (D)

Status: In the Senate Environmental Affairs Committee

Position: CAC supports this bill

Description:

Requires the Indiana University School of Public and Environmental Affairs (SPEA) to assess the potential for the development of low-carbon and green industries in Indiana and the job creation, economic growth, and wealth generation that could result for Indiana communities from the development of these industries. Requires SPEA to report the results of its assessment to the legislative council in an electronic format not later than December 1, 2020.

 

SB286: Lead poisoning prevention

Authors: Sen. Jean Breaux (D)

Status: In the Senate Environmental Affairs Committee

Position: CAC supports this bill

Description:

Defines "elevated blood lead level" as a blood lead level of at least five micrograms of lead per deciliter of whole blood. Defines "lead poisoning." Provides that the governing body of a school corporation shall require all students who initially enroll in a school of the school corporation to be tested for an elevated blood lead level. Provides that a student may not be allowed to initially enroll unless the student has been tested and documentation of the test, including the test result, is provided to the school corporation.

Provides that a physician, registered nurse, or health care facility, agency, or program that receives a test result indicating that a child has an elevated blood lead level shall: (1) notify the child's parent or guardian in writing of the test result; (2) provide the parent or guardian with a plain language explanation of the significance of lead poisoning; and (3) take appropriate measures to ensure that any other child under six years of age living in the same household is tested for an elevated blood lead level.

Prohibits renting a dwelling unit to a tenant family that includes a child not more than six years of age if the dwelling unit has lead contamination. Provides that a landlord who knowingly or intentionally violates the prohibition commits a Class C misdemeanor.

 

SB368: Study of carbon sequestration

Authors: Sen. Mark Stoops (D)

Status: In the Senate Environmental Affairs Committee

Position: CAC supports this bill

Description:

Urges the legislative council to assign to an appropriate interim study committee for the 2020 interim the task of studying carbon sequestration through forest preservation and carbon farming.

 

 

Watching:

Jump to: Good BillsBad Bills

 

HB1039: Inspection of petroleum products

HB1154: Septic system inspection before property transfer

HB1227: Supplemental fee on electric and hybrid vehicles

HB1309: Department of environmental management

HB1337: Notification of water utilities and water treatment facilities

HB1366: Industrial waste

HB1403: Waste tires

SB63: State forest commission and management plan

SB217: Inspection of petroleum products

SB248: Annual inspections of CAFOs

SB321: The Lake Michigan shore

SB325: Public trust ownership of Lake Michigan

SB338: Conservancy district restrictions

 

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Updated: 1/15/20

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