Harrisburg, February 6, 2018 — Senator John Yudichak (D-Luzerne/Carbon) announced that Senate Resolution 226 was adopted by the Senate today.
The resolution requires the Legislative Budget and Finance Committee (LBFC) to conduct a comprehensive performance evaluation of two of the Department of Environmental Protection’s (DEP) largest, most widely used permitting programs. Specifically, LBFC must study the Erosion and Sediment Pollution Control and Water Obstruction and Encroachment programs and submit a report containing an analysis and recommendations to the Senate within one year.
Each year, DEP receives and reviews more than 30,000 environmental permit applications, and many stakeholders and regulated communities have expressed concerns about resources, inconsistencies, and delays in permit processes.
“Independently evaluated baseline data is the critical element that is currently missing and we must add it to the conversation about environmental permitting reform. The report required by SR 226 will provide an analysis of statewide permitting programs to help us identify needed improvements that balance and safeguard environmental protection with economic development and job creation activities,” said Senator Yudichak.
Senate Resolution 226 is supported by DEP, the Pennsylvania Chamber of Commerce, UGI, the Pennsylvania Environmental Council, the Earth Conservancy, and PennFuture.