Cross-Media Initiatives, FY 2000-2001

The California Environmental Protection Agency (CalEPA), Office of the Secretary, worked with its constituent boards, departments and office (BDO) to identify critical crosscutting budget needs. The following proposals provide a coordinated cross-media approach to addressing high priority public health and environmental issues.

California/Mexico Border Region

The California Environmental Protection Agency (CalEPA) has become increasingly active in assessing the environmental impacts in the California-Baja California border region, including developing strong cross-border cooperative working relationships with environmental agencies in Mexico that will benefit public health and environmental quality in the entire region. The California-Baja California border region is an environmentally diverse and complex area that includes rapidly growing urban and industrial centers, intensely farmed desert valleys, and sensitive environmental resources. The 2000-2001 Budget includes an augmentation of approximately $2.7 million and 18.3 PYs for CalEPA, its various boards, departments and office and the Resources Agency to assess environmental impacts along the California-Mexico border region; support Mexican and binational efforts to improve the border environment and public health; coordinate border environment activities; and fully participate in binational work groups addressing pollution issues along the California/Mexico Border.

Highlights of efforts to be undertaken by CalEPA, its boards, departments and office and the Resources Agency are the following:

CalEPA -Through the Assistant Secretary for Border Affairs, develop and implement a comprehensive Border Environmental Plan, provide direction on policy issues and give appropriate visibility and emphasis to issues affecting the California-Baja California border, while ensuring California’s interests are represented. ($121,000 and 0.9 PY)

Air Resources Board – Develop a binational air quality management plan for the border region that will focus on reduction of excessive emissions from heavy-duty trucks and buses by increased outreach on the Heavy-Duty Vehicle Inspection Program and the Periodic Smoke Inspection Program as outlined in Senate Bills 270 and 2330. ($674,000 and 4.8 PYs)

Department of Toxic Substances Control - Expand and implement hazardous waste management compliance activities and pollution prevention projects along the California-Mexico Border, through outreach and technical assistance.
($689,000 and 6.2 PYs)

Department of Pesticide Regulation - Expand technical support and information exchange on pesticide issues affecting California and Baja California and the immediate border region, as well as actively participate in border related multi-media workgroups, task forces and committees. ($82,000 and 0.9 PY)

State Water Resources Control Board – Characterize the impact of Mexican surface water discharges to the Tijuana River, New River, and Alamo River and provide technical assistance and coordination capabilities by Regional Water Quality Control Boards adjacent to the Border that will facilitate implementation of pollution abatement projects in Baja California, Mexico. ($864,000 and 2.8 PYs)

Integrated Waste Management Board - Expand education, coordination and technical support programs on binational solid waste issues aimed at local educators, industry representatives and government emphasizing source reduction, reuse and recycling. ($112,000 and 0.9 PY)

Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment - Develop and provide an education, training and scientific assistance program in toxicology and health risk assessment for local agencies in California and Mexican counterpart agencies. ($100,000 and 0.9 PY)

Department of Water Resources (Resources Agency) - Develop long-term binational priorities and programs for watershed planning and management; continue and expand water quality monitoring programs for watershed planning and management; and provide training, education and technical assistance on water management issues. ($128,000 and 0.9 PY)

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Children’s Health

The proposed 2000-01 CalEPA Budget represents a significant investment to reduce environmental health risks to California’s children. A growing body of evidence suggests that when it comes to environmental risk and exposure, children are not just small adults. They may in fact be at greater risk from environmental harm because of greater extents of exposure and higher susceptibilities because their bodies are still developing.

CalEPA and its boards, departments and office are working together to address the growing concerns and issues regarding the protection of children’s environmental health, particularly with respect to potential exposures in the school environment. The 2000-01 Budget contains augmentations in four areas:

  1. A cross-media Children’s Environmental Health Initiative that provides $5.19 million and 40.9 PYs.
  2. Implementation of SB 25 that provides $1.79 million and 14.5 PYs to create a Children’s Environmental Health Center.
  3. Establishment of a $50 million fund to replace older, higher polluting school buses.
  4. $2.59 million and 7.8 PYs for other school and park programs.

There is a particular focus on addressing risks in the school environment.

  • Children’s Health Initiative - Funds a cross-media program with the following elements:
  • Oversight of removal and remedial actions at school sites by the Department of Toxic Substances Control.
  • Development of guidance by the Office of Health Hazard Assessment for multimedia risk assessments in schools and methodologies to assess cancer risks to children.
  • Analysis by the Air Resources Board in conjunction with the Department of Health Services of environmental conditions in California’s portable classrooms.
  • Establishment of integrated pest management programs for school districts by the Department of Pesticide Regulation.
  • SB 25 – Creates a Children’s Environmental Health Center in CalEPA’s Office of the Secretary. The Air Resources Board and the Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment will review ambient air quality standards, exposure levels, and control measures for toxic air contaminants to ensure that they adequately protect infants and children.
  • Older School Bus Replacement Program – Provides grants for up to the total replacement costs of older school buses with low-emission alternative fuel buses to reduce children’s exposure to toxic air pollution.
  • Other programs – Creation of a Playground Safety and Recycling Grant Program at the Integrated Waste Management Board to upgrade and repair public playgrounds and playground equipment through the use of recycled content materials. (AB 1055, 1999)
  • Oversight and review of environmental assessment and other activities at school sites by the Department of Toxic Substances Control as required by SB 162 and AB 387.

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Enforcement

Protection of public health and safety and the environment requires the effective enforcement of California’s environmental laws. An effective and efficient enforcement program includes a number of elements. There must be overall prioritization of enforcement activities to address the worst threats to public health and the environment. Enforcement activities must be comprehensive, consistent, timely and fair. Staff must be well trained and well equipped. There must be sufficient enforcement activity to deter potential violators and maintain a level playing field. There must be follow through to assure that violations are corrected and to stop further violations.

CalEPA worked together with its constituent boards, departments and office (BDOs) in developing the Governor’s proposed budget. This effort resulted in the Comprehensive Enforcement Budget Proposal that requests an overall expansion of the Agency’s enforcement capabilities. CalEPA’s proposal requests a total augmentation of $4.8 million for the Air Resources Board, the Department of Pesticide Regulation, the State Water Resources Control Board and the Department of Toxic Substances Control. In a related proposal, the Integrated Waste Management Board is seeking $1.26 million.

CalEPA’s enforcement BCP requests funding from various fund sources. Special funds are proposed where the cost of regulation is appropriate under the "polluter pays" principle. The General Fund is proposed as an appropriate fund source for certain requests which benefit the public directly or where it is anticipated that the violator will not be identified or located or will be unable to pay. Recovered monies will be returned to the funds from which costs will be expended.

Specifically, the Comprehensive Enforcement Budget Proposal requests resources that will allow BDOs to reduce backlogs of enforcement investigations and cases through a team approach, shorten the time required to take enforcement actions, and address training and other infrastructure needs required to maintain a strong and cohesive environmental enforcement program. The budget change proposal outlined below will allow CalEPA’s BDOs to proceed in a clear and coordinated approach to protect public health and the environment and accomplish the enforcement goals set forth by the Governor and State law.

  • The Air Resources Board proposes to augment the Cross-Media Enforcement Training Program with 2.9 PYs and $431,000 for training staff, equipment, and contract money for producing high quality training materials for all environmental agencies in California. The training will be accomplished by creating multi-media training materials, including classroom presentations, hands-on workshops, videos detailing mock environmental cases, and a training center to coordinate all of these endeavors.
  • The Department of Pesticide Regulation (DPR) proposes to add 4.7 PYs and $471,000 to further DPR’s ability to address the goals of CalEPA’s Enforcement Initiative and to strengthen the current pesticide enforcement program. DPR proposes to develop strategies for program improvements through continuous evaluation of goals, priorities, and performance indicators; and to increase capabilities to coordinate multi-jurisdictional and multi-media investigations.
  • The Department of Toxic Substances Control (DTSC) requests $2.9 million and 25.7 PYs to restore part of the enforcement resources lost due to budget cuts during previous years and to implement the CalEPA enforcement initiative. The proposal includes hiring additional peace officers to conduct criminal investigations and new inspectors for multi-media, multi-jurisdictional, and international investigations. Specialized scientists and attorneys will be hired to provide needed expertise to address high priority cases. The proposal assigns DTSC resources to work with the Deputy Secretary for Law Enforcement and Counsel to implement CalEPA’s agency level multi-media enforcement responsibilities. Additional resources would also be provided for needed enforcement data management tracking and reporting infrastructure.
  • The Integrated Waste Management Board’s proposal requests $1.26 million and 9.5 PYs to expand investigation and enforcement activities at closed, illegal and abandoned solid waste sites. Currently, there are over 2,675 such solid waste sites, posing a variety of environmental and public health hazards. This increased funding will accelerate the investigation and enforcement activities needed to address the public health and safety issues associated with these sites.
  • The State Water Resources Control Board (SWRCB) requests $906,000 and 7.6 PYs to strengthen the enforcement program’s ability to take formal enforcement actions against dischargers who violate the provisions of their permits and State and federal law; and to establish a Criminal Investigations Support and Training Officer to coordinate potential criminal actions with other CalEPA agencies, the Attorney General, the United States Environmental Protection Agency and the California District Attorneys Association. Additionally, the SWRCB requests 1.9 PYs, and $185,000 for the water rights compliance and enforcement program to augment its existing resources for the protection of prior water rights and environmental resources.

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Environmental Justice

Environmental justice is a term used to describe the fair treatment of people of all races, cultures, and incomes with respect to the implementation and enforcement of environmental laws and regulations. A number of studies have determined that minorities and low-income populations face disproportionate risks associated with exposure to toxic substances. One study concluded that communities of color are three times more likely to be exposed to unsafe levels of air pollutants than white neighborhoods. The President issued an Executive Order directing federal agencies – and state agencies delegated with responsibilities for implementing federal laws – to incorporate environmental justice into their programs. Chapter 690, Statutes of 199 (SB 115) requires the Secretary to address environmental justice issues within CalEPA.

The Governor’s Budget includes $182,000 and 0.9 PY to (1) ensure that CalEPA’s programs are conducted in a manner that provide fair treatment of all races and income levels, (2) promote greater public participation in the development and implementation of environmental policies, and (3) improve research data collection for environmental programs related to the health and safety of minorities and low-income populations.

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Fuel Cells

The Governor’s Budget includes $5.2 million and 2 PYs to implement California’s Fuel Cell Initiative. The Air Resources Board and the California Energy Commission will enter a Fuel Cell Partnership with industry that will bring fuel cell vehicles to California beginning in 2000.

Cleaner fuels and cleaner burning engines, such as fuel cells, reduce threats to groundwater from fuel storage and reduce risks to human health from exposures to toxic air emissions. Fuel cell vehicles produce zero to near-zero emissions and have the potential to significantly improve air quality and diversify the sources of energy used for transportation in California.

The Fuel Cell Partnership was announced by Governor Davis in April 1999 and includes vehicle manufacturers (Daimler-Chrysler and Ford), a fuel cell developer (Ballard Power Systems), fuel providers (Arco, Shell and Texaco) and the State of California. The Partnership will demonstrate fuel cell vehicles, develop fueling infrastructure, educate the public and address regulatory issues needed for the successful deployment of fuel cell vehicles in California.

As a partner, the Air Resources Board would use one-time funding over two years to offset the incremental costs of 15 hydrogen-powered fuel cell buses that will be demonstrated by transit agencies in California. The ARB will participate in the demonstration projects and assessment of the alternative fuel infrastructure.

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Water Quality

The Governor’s Budget includes $10.8 million and 44 PYs to implement CalEPA’s Water Quality Initiative. This Initiative will combine the efforts of the State Water Resources Control Board (SWRCB), the nine Regional Water Quality Control Boards (RWQCBs), and the Department of Pesticide Regulation (DPR) to restore impaired water bodies throughout the State.

The Initiative includes comprehensive water monitoring activities designed to assess the general health status of water bodies and to determine pollutant loads and sources. Many of these sources are designated as non-point sources, such as agricultural and silvicultural practices that can result in pesticide runoff and accumulation of sediments in surface waters. The Initiative will allow DPR to develop mitigation measures and strategies to prevent, or significantly reduce, pesticides from non-point sources from entering surface waters.

To restore water quality, the Initiative will expand on current efforts to develop and implement numeric targets, or "total maximum daily loads (TMDLs)" for specific pollutants in impaired water bodies. Participation and involvement by stakeholders in both the public and private sectors will help to implement the measures needed to achieve the TMDLs and thus restore our lakes and streams to their beneficial uses. The comprehensive water quality-monitoring program will also allow evaluation of the effectiveness of these restoration measures and make adaptive changes when necessary.

Funding

  • $6.8 million and 15 PYs for the SWRCB and RWQCBs to implement comprehensive water quality monitoring and assessments.
  • $3 million and 21 PYs to the RWQCBs to implement ten TMDLs per year from non-point sources.
  • $1 million and 7.6 PYs for DPR to mitigate pesticide contamination in surface waters.

 

Budget Briefing 2000-2001 | Budget Home

 


Last updated: September 5, 2001
California Environmental Protection Agency, http://www.calepa.ca.gov
General Public Contact, cepacomm@calepa.ca.gov (916) 323-2514