Release 97-07

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                         CONTACT: Jerry Martin
March 27, 1997                                                                                    Allan Hirsch
                                                                                                             Richard Varenchik
                                                                                                             (916) 322-2990                                                                                                    

ARB Adopts Portable Equipment Registration Program

SACRAMENTO - The Air Resources Board (ARB) today adopted a statewide portable equipment registration program to streamline the permitting process for businesses that operate portable equipment throughout California.

        "Obtaining individual air district permits often proved costly and time-consuming for businesses," said ARB Chairman John Dunlap. "Providing companies with one-time registration that can be used statewide is a major improvement in how California businesses are regulated in our mobile society."

        "This new rule addresses one of the major concerns that stakeholders have alerted us to in our public workshops and Ombudsman's forums," he added.

        The program, which was required by recent legislation, offers businesses one-stop registration that eliminates the need to get a new permit each time the equipment is moved within a district to another air district. The voluntary program allows owners to register their portable equipment through ARB, giving them air permit access to all air pollution control districts in California. Previously, portable equipment owners were required to obtain permits through individual air districts. Businesses can now choose to register their equipment statewide through ARB or remain in programs operated by individual air district(s).

        Equipment that is subject to the new regulation include: large compressors and generators, well drilling equipment, cranes, pumps, welding machines, marine dredges operated from boats or barges, and diesel-powered pile drivers. Permitting on a statewide basis will help streamline the registration process and be more cost-effective for businesses. The ARB registration cost is $90 for three years, substantially less than typical air district permit fees.

        Although the ARB will administer the program, it will be district-enforced. Local districts will continue to monitor the movement and emissions of portable equipment in order to maintain accurate emission inventories for their district.

        Preceding the Board's adoption of the regulation, a 43-member workgroup was formed to look at the various aspects of a statewide registration program, workshops were held to consider public comments and air districts were consulted. The program is consistent with the State Implementation Plan, California's blueprint for cleaner air.

        The Air Resources Board is a department of the California Environmental Protection Agency. ARB's mission is to promote and protect public health, welfare, and ecological resources through effective reduction of air pollutants while recognizing and considering effects on the economy. The ARB oversees all air pollution control efforts in California to attain and maintain health based air quality standards.

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