A blighted riverfront property in Stoughton is on the way to being cleaned up with assistance from a brownfields grant from the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (DNR).
The Remediation and Redevelopment Program provides updates on the status of the Petroleum Environmental Cleanup Fund Award (PECFA) program claims and the overall PECFA budget.
Please note that the PECFA program ended on June 30, 2020. The “sunset date” is found in Wis. Stat. § 292.63(3)(ac).
The DNR does not have statutory authority to unilaterally change or amend a deadline found in statute as that authority is exclusive to the state legislature.
The monthly financial summaries are as follows:
|Claims in Audit Line (as of 3/31/20)||86||$458,357|
|Total Paid FY20||$4,366,043|
|Claims in Audit Line (as of 4/30/20)||185||$1,014,502|
|Total Paid FY20||$4,553,317|
|Claims in Audit Line (as of 5/31/20)||150||$797,012|
|Total Paid FY20||$5,055,413|
|Claims in Audit Line (as of 6/30/20)||356||$2,750,738|
|Total Paid FY20||$5,114,667|
|Claims in Audit Line (as of 7/31/20)||289||$3,457,844|
|Total Paid FY21||$917,496|
|Claims in Audit Line (as of 8/31/20)||148||$1,939,423|
|Total Paid FY21||$2,266,824|
|Claims in Audit Line (as of 9/30/20)||18||$361,784|
|Total Paid FY21||$3,769,956|
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is now accepting applications for FY21 Brownfields Multipurpose, Assessment & Cleanup (MAC) Grants. All applications are due October 28, 2020.
Grants awarded by the EPA’s Brownfield Program provide communities across Wisconsin and the country with an opportunity to transform contaminated sites into community assets that attract jobs and achieve broader economic development outcomes while taking advantage of existing infrastructure. In many cases, brownfields grants have been shown to not only increase local tax revenue, but to also have a positive impact on residential property values.
Three Wisconsin communities will receive a total of $2.1 million in brownfields awards. The grants come from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) ARC Grants Programs – Assessment, Revolving Loan Fund and Cleanup. Green Bay and Washington County both stand to receive $800,000; Brillion will receive $500,000.
The grants will provide those communities with needed assistance as they work to transform contaminated sites into community assets that attract jobs and achieve broader economic development outcomes.
On May 27, 2020, the department will present proposed emergency rules to the Natural Resources Board (NRB) for adoption. The proposed emergency rules implement statutory financial assurance requirements that apply to certain types of sites with contaminated sediment. When available, the proposed emergency rule board order RR-11-17E will be posted online as part of the NRB’s agenda.
Under Gov. Evers’ Safer at Home order the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources will prioritize responding to imminent threats or complaints related to public health, safety and the environment over routine, on-site audits and inspections.
The regulated community can go here for a one-stop location to request case-by-case assistance due to likely compliance issues associated with COVID-19. All state laws and regulations remain in effect, unless otherwise suspended by the governor.
The DNR is committed to doing what we can to help those impacted by COVID-19 while continuing to protect environmental quality, public health and safety. The DNR is sensitive to the challenges posed to its regulated community, such as wastewater and air permittees and landfill license holders.
All entities should make every effort to comply with their environmental compliance obligations. Where full compliance may not be possible due to COVID-19, the DNR created an environmental compliance roadmap for regulated entities.
The DNR advises businesses or local governments having a spill or a compliance problem that poses an imminent or actual threat to health or the environment to report it immediately by calling toll free 1-800-943-0003 and selecting “1.” This number is monitored 24 hours a day.
For non-emergency situations, the DNR is providing this online process as a means for the regulated entities to request advance compliance assistance from the DNR. This process should be initiated by directly emailing the main DNR contact for the facility or by using the online web form to request case-by-case compliance assistance.
The DNR will monitor these systems daily during regular business hours. Where safe compliance alternatives are approved in advance by the DNR, regulated entities will be required to maintain records adequate to document implementation of authorized alternative compliance options.
The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources continues to receive the most up-to-date information and will adjust operations as conditions change. Distance is key during this public health emergency.
Under the Safer at Home order, we must do all that we can to prevent the spread of COVID-19. Staying home as much as possible and limiting travel to your community is the best way to lower COVID-19 infection rates.
For specific information regarding the COVID-19 we encourage the public to frequently monitor the DHS website for updates, and to follow @DHSWI on Facebook and Twitter, or dhs.wi on Instagram. Additional information can be found on the CDC website.
The Remediation and Redevelopment (RR) Program reminds environmental consultants to use DNR’s soil boring log (DNR Form 4400-122) to document drilling performed at remediation sites.
Use of the agency’s soil boring log form is required in Wis. Admin. Code § NR 141.23(3) and NR 716.15(4)(g). You can download the form and instructions at the link above.
If you have questions, please contact your Project Manager.
The Remediation and Redevelopment Program recently developed a web page called the “SI Toolkit” to provide environmental consultants and others with a framework for site investigation (SI) work plans and reports.
The new web page makes documents pertaining to site investigation (guidance, checklists, forms and rules) easy to find in one place. New SI-related guidance and factsheets will be added to this web page as they are developed.
Contact Jane Lemcke if you have questions or suggestions regarding the new SI Toolkit.
If your community or organization intends to apply for an EPA 2020 Assessment, Revolving Loan Fund or Cleanup (ARC) Grant, EPA requires grant applicants, excluding tribal environmental authorities, to obtain a letter from the Wisconsin DNR acknowledging that the state is aware the applicant is applying for a federal grant to conduct brownfield assessment, revolving loan fund or cleanup activities.
Applications for FY 2020 Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) brownfield grants are now being accepted. EPA’s request for proposals and application guidance are available here: https://www.epa.gov/brownfields/solicitations-brownfield-grants.
Applications are due by Dec. 3, 2019.