Scrapbook Photo 09/19/20 - Will SB 1272 Be Funded In Time To Help Pay For On-Farm Conservation Measures Before Nov. 30? http://bit.ly/3mEkHRu
Waste Fee Increases for Growing Greener II Debt, Hazardous Sites Funding
Photo
Ice on the Susquehanna River

Gov. Rendell this week proposed a $27.3 billion budget that included a $2.75 per ton increase in municipal waste disposal fees to pay the debt service for the $625 million Growing Greener II bond issue and to finance the Hazardous Sites Cleanup Program.

Fifty cents of the fee increase, which would generate and estimated $11 to $12 million per year based on 2005 municipal waste disposal, would be devoted to paying the debt service for the Growing Greener II bond issue.

The Governor’s Budget Book says a total of $26.9 million will be devoted to paying Growing Greener II bond debt service covering 2006-07 and 2007-08 obligations from the Environmental Stewardship (Growing Greener) Fund.

Passage of this new fee could potentially free up some monies in the Environmental Stewardship Fund to be spent on the original Growing Greener Program purposes like watershed restoration, mine land reclamation, farmland preservation and State Park and Forest improvements.

Reacting to the proposed waste fee increases, the Pennsylvania Waste Industries Association this week said Gov. Rendell's proposed $2.75 per ton increase in Pennsylvania trash taxes would cost Pennsylvania municipalities, businesses, and consumers nearly $41 million a year in higher costs for collection and disposal of trash.

"We are surprised and disappointed that the Rendell administration has proposed an increase in trash taxes amounting to $2.75 per ton as part of its 2007-08 budget," PWIA President Tim O'Donnell said.

The DEP budget also proposes a slight increased allocations from the Growing Greener II bond funds and Environmental Stewardship Fund for abandoned mine reclamation and watershed restoration projects. A total of $625 million in Growing Greener II bonds were authorized by voters in 2005.

DEP will also be proposing fee increases on permits and applications in law that the Budget Book says will yield about $9.1 million annually and a new $2.5 million flood, stormwater planning and prevention initiative and mine safety initiative are also included.

The DCNR budget proposal also includes a State Parks Enhancement Initiative, although cuts grant funds available to land trusts for permanent land conservation.

The Fish and Boat and Game Commissions along with the Department of Agriculture and the PA Infrastructure Investment Authority will get an increase in allocations of Growing Greener II bond issue funds to spend this coming year.

The Department of Environmental Protection opened a new webpage devoted to the Energy Independence Program proposed as part of the budget this week.

Gov. Rendell’s budget proposal is available online.

Here are some details we know now….

Department of Environmental Protection ----------------------------------------------------

A 50 cent increase in the fees on the disposal of municipal waste to finance the debt service on the $625 million Growing Greener II bond issue and a $2.25 increase in the fee on the disposal of municipal waste to fund the Hazardous Sites Cleanup Program. State fees now on municipal waste total $6.25 -- $2.00 per ton for Recycling and $4.25 for the Environmental Stewardship Fund (Growing Greener).

Increases

$ 1,500,000 – Flood, Stormwater Planning and Prevention in Response to 6/2005 Flood

$ 1,000,000 – Local Flood, Stormwater Planning and Prevention

$ 678,000 - Mine Safety/Mine Rescue Station

Note: DEP will also be proposing increases in fees for permits and applications that the Budget Book says will yield about $9.1 million annually.

Cuts

$800,000 – Scrap Tire Clean Projects

$300,000 – Chesapeake Bay Education Program

$500,000 – County Conservation Districts*

Environmental Stewardship Fund Allocations**

Proposed

2006-07

Abandoned Mine Reclamation

$ 1.5 million

-0-

Oil and Gas Well Plugging

-0-

-0-

Watershed Protection/Restoration

$ 22.1 million

$19.3 million

Sewage/Drinking Water Grants

$ 2.1 million

$ 2.3 million

Transfer to Hazardous Sites

-0-

$30.0 million

Growing Greener II Bond Fund***

Proposed

2006-07

Envir. Improvement Projects

$10.0 million

$10.0 million

Mine Drainage Cleanup

$18.0 million

$ 6.0 million

County Envir. Grants

$18.0 million

$ 6.0 million

Overall

Decreases from $695.9 million (2006-07) to $693.7 million (proposed). In 2002-03, DEP’s budget was $728.2 million.

DEP’s staff complement is proposed at 3,039, in 2003 it was 3,211.

Department of Conservation & Natural Resources --------------------------------------------

Increases

$ 1,982,000 – State Parks Enhancements to Operations, Seasonal Staff

Keystone Parks & Recreation Fund Allocations

Proposed

2006-07

State Park & Forests Rehab

$25.9 million

$31.2 million

Local Recreation

$21.5 million

$26.0 million

Land Trusts

$ 8.6 million

$10.4 million

Environmental Stewardship Fund Allocations**

Proposed

2006-07

State Parks & Forest Rehab

$ 7.3 million

$ 6.1 million

Community Conservation Grants

$ 8.2 million

$ 7.0 million

Natural Diversity Grants

$ 980,000

$ 750,000

Growing Greener II Bond Fund***

Proposed

2006-07

Parks & Recreations Improv.

$ 2.0 million

$ 5.0 million

Parks & Forest Projects

$12.0 million

$10.0 million

Open Space Conservation

$12.0 million

$10.0 million

Overall

Decreases from $347.9 million (2006-07) to $341.1 million (proposed). In 2002-03, DCNR’s budget was $322.9 million.

DCNR’s staff complement is proposed at 1,402, in 2003 it was 1,391.

Department of Agriculture -------------------------------------------------------------------------

Increases

$500,000 – Farm-School Nutrition Initiative

Cuts

$590,000 – County Conservation Districts*

Environmental Stewardship Fund Allocations**

Proposed

2006-07

Farmland Conservation

$ 10.2 million

$ 8.5 million

Growing Greener II Bond Fund***

Proposed

2006-07

Farmland Conservation

$20.0 million

$20.0 million

Overall

Increase from $262 million (2006-07) to $274.3 million (proposed).

Agriculture’s staff complement is proposed at 673, in 2003 it was 656.

PA Fish & Boat Commission --------------------------------------------------------------------

Growing Greener II Bond Fund***

Proposed

2006-07

Capital Improvement Projects

$3.0 million

$2.0 million

Overall

Increase from $55.9 million (2006-07) to $58.3 million (proposed).

PA Game Commission ---------------------------------------------------------------------------

Growing Greener II Bond Fund***

Proposed

2006-07

Capital Improvement Projects

$7.0 million

$3.0 million

Overall

Increase from $81.3 million (2006-07) to $83.3 million (proposed).

PA Infrastructure Investment Authority -------------------------------------------------------

Environmental Stewardship Fund Allocations**

Proposed

2006-07

Water Grants-PENNVEST

$ 16.3 million

$ 13.7 million

Special Fund Allocations -----------------------------------------------------------------------------

*Conservation District Fund (created in 2006)

$4.3 million - $3.1 million to DEP, $1.2 million to Agriculture

Note: This represents a $1.1 million cut in funding for Conservation Districts from 2006-07 levels.

**Environmental Stewardship Fund Summary

Proposed

2006-07

Debt Service GG II Bond (2 yrs)

$ 26.9 million

-0-

Transfer to Hazardous Sites

-0-

$30.0 million

Watershed Protection/Restoration

$ 22.1 million

$19.3 million

Abandoned Mine Reclamation

$ 1.5 million

-0-

Oil and Gas Well Plugging

-0-

-0-

Sewage/Drinking Water Grants

$ 2.1 million

$ 2.3 million

State Parks & Forest Rehab

$ 7.3 million

$ 6.1 million

Community Conservation Grants

$ 8.2 million

$ 7.0 million

Natural Diversity Grants

$ 980,000

$ 750,000

Water Grants-PENNVEST

$ 16.3 million

$ 13.7 million

Farmland Conservation

$ 10.2 million

$ 8.5 million

***Growing Greener II Bond Fund

Proposed

2006-07

Main Street/Downtown (DCED)

$18.0 million

$12.0 million

Farmland Conservation

$20.0 million

$20.0 million

Parks & Recreations Improv.

$ 2.0 million

$ 5.0 million

Parks & Forest Projects

$12.0 million

$10.0 million

Open Space Conservation

$12.0 million

$10.0 million

Envir. Improvement Projects

$10.0 million

$10.0 million

Mine Drainage Cleanup

$18.0 million

$ 6.0 million

County Envir. Grants

$18.0 million

$ 6.0 million

Fish & Boat Commission

$ 3.0 million

$ 2.0 million

Game Commission

$ 7.0 million

$ 3.0 million

Note: Since November 2005, counties have requested more than $41 million of the $90 million set aside in the Growing Greener II Bond Fund for projects under the County Environmental Initiative Program-- $5 million for farmland preservation, $2 million for DCED community projects, $14 million for DCNR community recreation projects and $20 million for watershed and other environmental improvement projects from DEP.

Link: DEP Press Release on Governor’s Budget Request

Session Schedule

The Senate and House both return to session on February 12 and 13, then they break for budget hearings until March 12.

PA Environment Digest Video Blog

· Treasury Dept,, PA Environmental Council Partner on Green Investment Strategy

On the Hill

· On the Senate/House Agenda/Bills Introduced

· Senate Will Not Disapprove Mercury Rule, Will Consider Mercury Reduction Bill

· House Committee Told Access to Fishable Waters Critical Issue

· Rep. George to Introduce Measure to Increase Nuclear Power Plant Fees

· Sen. Brubaker Announces “Building a Vision for Rural Pennsylvania”

· President’s 2008 Budget Proposal Worst Ever for States

Other News

· PUC Chair Tells Committee “Conserve, Conserve, Conserve” Electricity

· PUC Seeks Comments on Strategy to Ease Transition From Electric Rate Caps

· Pennsylvania Helps the Nation Save Energy with 79 Energy Star Buildings

· Penn State Puts Its Own Green Roof Technology to Work

· Green$ense 2007 Speaker to Address Economic Benefits of Green Buildings

· Two Deaths in Abandoned Mines in 2006, 29 in Past Six Years

· Report Recommends Improvements to Susquehanna Flood Warning System

· Save the Date: May 4-5 All Volunteer Watershed Monitors Summit

· Nutrient Credits To Be Used by Developer in Perry County

· Streambank Stabilization, Habitat Enhancement Workshops in March

· Pennsylvania Land Conservation Conference May 10-12

· $2.7 Million Available to Local Communities to Reduce Toxic Exposure

· EE Connections Newsletter Now Available from PA Environmental Ed Center

· Bluebird Society Hosts Annual Conference March 30-31 in State College

· Peregrine Falcon Educator’s Workshop to be Held April 5

· Banff Adventure Film Festival Returns To Lehigh Valley March 4

Opinion

· Federal Mine Reclamation Funding Will Lead to Economic Development Opportunities on Abandoned Mine Lands by Robert E. Hughes, Eastern PA Coalition for Abandoned Mine Reclamation

Feature

· Snow Geese Are Harbinger of Spring at Middle Creek by Joe Kosack, Pennsylvania Game Commission

Go To: PA Environment Digest Calendar Page


2/9/2007

    Go To Next Article

Return to This PA Environment Digest's Main Page