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Code of Virginia
Title 62.1. Waters of the State, Ports and Harbors
Chapter 3.1. State Water Control Law
11/28/2020

Article 11. Discharge of Oil into Waters.

§ 62.1-44.34:14. Definitions.

As used in this article unless the context requires a different meaning:

"Aboveground storage tank" means any one or combination of tanks, including pipes, used to contain an accumulation of oil at atmospheric pressure, and the volume of which, including the volume of the pipes, is more than ninety percent above the surface of the ground. This term does not include line pipe and breakout tanks of an interstate pipeline regulated under the Hazardous Liquid Pipeline Safety Act of 1979 or the Natural Gas Pipeline Safety Act of 1968, as amended.

"Containment and cleanup" means abatement, containment, removal and disposal of oil and, to the extent possible, the restoration of the environment to its existing state prior to an oil discharge.

"Discharge" means any spilling, leaking, pumping, pouring, emitting, emptying or dumping.

"Facility" means any development or installation within the Commonwealth that deals in, stores or handles oil, and includes a pipeline.

"Oil" means oil of any kind and in any form, including, but not limited to, petroleum and petroleum by-products, fuel oil, lubricating oils, sludge, oil refuse, oil mixed with other wastes, crude oils and all other liquid hydrocarbons regardless of specific gravity.

"Operator" means any person who owns, operates, charters, rents or otherwise exercises control over or responsibility for a facility or a vehicle or vessel.

"Person" means any firm, corporation, association or partnership, one or more individuals, or any governmental unit or agency thereof.

"Pipeline" means all new and existing pipe, rights-of-way, and any equipment, facility, or building used in the transportation of oil, including, but not limited to, line pipe, valves and other appurtenances connected to line pipe, pumping units, fabricated assemblies associated with pumping units, metering and delivery stations and fabricated assemblies therein, and breakout tanks.

"Tank" means a device designed to contain an accumulation of oil and constructed of nonearthen materials, such as concrete, steel or plastic, which provide structural support. This term does not include flow-through process tanks as defined in 40 CFR Part 280.

"Tank vessel" means any vessel used in the transportation of oil as cargo.

"Vehicle" means any motor vehicle, rolling stock or other artificial contrivance for transport whether self-propelled or otherwise, except vessels.

"Vessel" includes every description of watercraft or other contrivance used as a means of transporting on water, whether self-propelled or otherwise, and shall include barges and tugs.

1973, c. 417; 1976, c. 51; 1978, c. 816; 1990, c. 917; 1992, c. 456; 1994, c. 277; 1996, c. 737.

§ 62.1-44.34:15. Oil discharge contingency plans.

A. No operator shall cause or permit the operation of a facility in the Commonwealth unless an oil discharge contingency plan applicable to the facility has been filed with and approved by the Board. No operator shall cause or permit a tank vessel to transport or transfer oil in state waters unless an oil discharge contingency plan applicable to the tank vessel has been filed with and approved by the Board or a vessel response plan applicable to the tank vessel and approved by the U.S. Coast Guard, pursuant to § 4202 of the federal Oil Pollution Act of 1990.

B. Application for approval of an oil discharge contingency plan shall be made to the Board and shall be accompanied by plans, specifications, maps and such other relevant information as may be required, in scope and detail satisfactory to the Board. An oil discharge contingency plan must conform to the requirements and standards determined by the Board to be necessary to ensure that the applicant can take such steps as are necessary to protect environmentally sensitive areas, to respond to the threat of an oil discharge, and to contain, clean up and mitigate an oil discharge within the shortest feasible time. Each such plan shall provide for the use of the best available technology at the time the plan is submitted for approval. The applicant shall notify the Board immediately of any significant change in the operation or capacity of or the type of product dealt in, stored, handled, transported or transferred in or by any facility or vessel covered by the plan that will necessitate a change in the plan and shall update the plan periodically as required by the Board, but in no event more frequently than once every 36 months. The Board, on a finding of need, may require an oil discharge exercise designed to demonstrate the facility's or vessel's ability to implement its oil discharge contingency plan either before or after the plan is approved.

C. The Board, after notice and opportunity for a conference pursuant to § 2.2-4019, may modify its approval of an oil discharge contingency plan if it determines that:

1. A change has occurred in the operation of any facility or vessel covered by the plan that necessitates an amended or supplemented plan;

2. The facility's or vessel's discharge experience or its inability to implement its plan in an oil discharge exercise demonstrates a necessity for modification; or

3. There has been a significant change in the best available technology since the plan was approved.

D. The Board, after notice and opportunity for hearing, may revoke its approval of an oil discharge contingency plan if it determines that:

1. Approval was obtained by fraud or misrepresentation;

2. The plan cannot be implemented as approved; or

3. A term or condition of approval has been violated.

1990, c. 917; 2004, c. 276.

§ 62.1-44.34:15.1. Regulations for aboveground storage tanks.

The Board shall adopt regulations and develop procedures necessary to prevent pollution of state waters, lands, or storm drain systems from the discharge of oil from new and existing aboveground storage tanks. These regulations shall be developed in substantial conformity with the current codes and standards recommended by the National Fire Protection Association. To the extent that they are consistent with the Board's program, the Board shall incorporate accepted industry practices contained in the American Petroleum Institute publications and other accepted industry standards when developing the regulations contemplated by this section. The regulations shall provide the following:

1. For existing aboveground storage tanks at facilities with an aggregate capacity of one million gallons or greater:

a. To prevent leaks from aboveground storage tanks, requirements for inventory control, testing for significant inventory variations (e.g., test procedures in accordance with accepted industry practices, where feasible, and approved by the Board) and formal tank inspections every five years in accordance with accepted industry practices and procedures approved by the Board. Initial testing shall be on a schedule approved by the Board. Aboveground storage tanks totally off ground with all associated piping off ground, aboveground storage tanks with a capacity of 5,000 gallons or less located within a building or structure designed to fully contain a discharge of oil, and aboveground storage tanks containing No. 5 or No. 6 fuel oil for consumption on the premises where stored shall not be subject to inventory control and testing for significant variations. In accordance with subdivision 6, the Board shall promulgate regulations which provide for variances from inventory control and testing for significant variation for (i) aboveground storage tanks with Release Prevention Barriers (RPBs) with all associated piping off ground, (ii) aboveground storage tanks with a de minimis capacity (12,000 gallons or less), and (iii) other categories of aboveground storage tanks, including those located within a building or structure, as deemed appropriate;

b. To prevent overfills, requirements for safe fill and shut down procedures, including an audible staged alarm with immediate and controlled shut down procedures, or equivalent measures established by the Board;

c. To prevent leaks from piping, requirements for cathodic protection, and pressure testing to be conducted at least once every five years, or equivalent measures established by the Board;

d. To prevent and identify leaks from any source, requirements (i) for a visual inspection of the facility each day of normal operations and a weekly inspection of the facility with a checklist approved by the Board, performed by a person certified or trained by the operator in accordance with Board requirements, (ii) for monthly gauging and inspection of all ground water monitoring wells located at the facility, and monitoring of the well head space for the presence of vapors indicating the presence of petroleum, and (iii) for quarterly sampling and laboratory analysis of the fluids present in each such monitoring well to determine the presence of petroleum or petroleum by-product contamination; and

e. To ensure proper training of individuals conducting inspections, requirements for proper certification or training by operators relative to aboveground storage tanks.

2. For existing aboveground storage tanks at facilities with an aggregate capacity of less than one million gallons but more than 25,000 gallons:

a. To prevent leaks from aboveground storage tanks, requirements for inventory control and testing for significant inventory variations (e.g., test procedures in accordance with accepted industry practices, where feasible, and approved by the Board). Initial testing shall be on a schedule approved by the Board. Aboveground storage tanks totally off ground with all associated piping off ground, aboveground storage tanks with a capacity of 5,000 gallons or less located within a building or structure designed to fully contain a discharge of oil, and aboveground storage tanks containing No. 5 or No. 6 fuel oil for consumption on the premises where stored shall not be subject to inventory control and testing for significant variations. In accordance with subdivision 6, the Board shall promulgate regulations which provide for variances from inventory control and testing for significant variation for (i) aboveground storage tanks with Release Prevention Barriers (RPBs) with all associated piping off ground, (ii) aboveground storage tanks with a de minimis capacity (12,000 gallons or less), and (iii) other categories of aboveground storage tanks, including those located within a building or structure, as deemed appropriate;

b. To prevent overfills, requirements for safe fill and shut down procedures;

c. To prevent leaks from piping, requirements for pressure testing to be conducted at least once every five years or equivalent measures established by the Board; and

d. To prevent and identify leaks from any source, requirements for a visual inspection of the facility each day of normal operations and a weekly inspection of the facility with a checklist approved by the Board, performed by a person certified or trained by the operator in accordance with Board requirements developed in accordance with subdivision 1.

3. For aboveground storage tanks existing prior to the effective date of the regulations required by this section, when the results of a tank inspection indicate the need for replacement of the tank bottom, the operator of a facility shall install a release prevention barrier (RPB) capable of: (i) preventing the release of the oil and (ii) containing or channeling the oil for leak detection. The decision to replace an existing tank bottom shall be based on the criteria established by regulations pursuant to this section.

4. For aboveground storage tanks at facilities with an aggregate capacity of one million gallons or greater existing prior to January 29, 1992, and located in the City of Fairfax, the Board shall establish performance standards for operators to bring aboveground storage tanks into substantial conformance with regulations adopted in accordance with subdivision 5. Operators shall meet such performance standards no later than July 1, 2021.

5. The Board shall establish performance standards for aboveground storage tanks installed, retrofitted or brought into use after the effective date of the regulations promulgated pursuant to this subsection that incorporate all technologies designed to prevent oil discharges that have been proven in accordance with accepted industry practices and shown to be cost-effective.

6. The Board shall establish criteria for granting variances from the requirements of the regulations promulgated pursuant to this section (i) on a case-by-case basis and (ii) by regulation for categories of aboveground storage tanks, except that the Board shall not grant a variance that would result in an unreasonable risk to the public health or the environment. Variances by regulation shall be based on relevant factors such as tank size, use, and location. Within 30 days after the grant of a variance for a facility, the Board shall send written notification of the variance to the chief administrative officer of the locality in which the facility is located.

1992, c. 456; 1993, c. 353; 1994, c. 277; 1996, c. 737; 2011, cc. 883, 884.

§ 62.1-44.34:16. Financial responsibility for vessels and facilities.

A. The operator of any tank vessel entering upon state waters shall have a Certificate of Financial Responsibility approved by the U.S. Coast Guard pursuant to § 4202 of the federal Oil Pollution Act of 1990 or shall deposit with the Board cash or its equivalent in the amount of $500 per gross ton of such vessel. Any such cash deposits received by the Board shall be held in escrow in the Virginia Petroleum Storage Tank Fund.

B. If the Board determines that oil has been discharged in violation of this article or that there has been a substantial threat of such discharge from a vessel for which a cash deposit has been made, any amount held in escrow may be used to pay any fines, penalties or damages imposed under this chapter.

C. The Board shall exempt an operator of a tank vessel from the cash deposit requirements specified in this section if the operator of the tank vessel provides evidence of financial responsibility pursuant to the terms and conditions of this subsection. The Board shall adopt requirements for operators of tank vessels for maintaining evidence of financial responsibility in an amount equivalent to the cash deposit which would be required for such tank vessel pursuant to this section.

D. The Board is authorized to promulgate regulations requiring operators of facilities to demonstrate financial responsibility sufficient to comply with the requirements of this article as a condition of operation. Operators of facilities shall demonstrate financial responsibility based on the total storage capacity of all facilities operated within the Commonwealth. Regulations governing the amount of any financial responsibility required shall take into consideration the type, oil storage or handling capacity and location of a facility, the risk of a discharge of oil at that type of facility in the Commonwealth, the potential damage or injury to state waters or the impairment of their beneficial use that may result from a discharge at that type of facility, the potential cost of containment and cleanup at that type of facility, and the nature and degree of injury or interference with general health, welfare and property that may result from a discharge at that type of facility. In no instance shall the financial responsibility requirements for facilities exceed $.05 per gallon of aboveground storage capacity or $5 million for a pipeline. In no instance shall any financial test of self-insurance require the operator of a facility to demonstrate more than $1 of net worth for each dollar of required financial responsibility. If such net worth does not equal the required financial responsibility, then the operator shall demonstrate the minimum required amount by a combination of financial responsibility mechanisms in accordance with subsection E of this section. No governmental agency shall be required to comply with any such regulations.

E. Financial responsibility may be demonstrated by self-insurance, insurance, guaranty or surety, or any other method approved by the Board, or any combination thereof, under the terms the Board may prescribe. To obtain an exemption from the cash deposit requirements under this section: the operator of a tank vessel and insurer, guarantor or surety shall appoint an agent for service of process in the Commonwealth; any insurer must be authorized by the Commonwealth to engage in the insurance business; and any instrument of insurance, guaranty or surety must provide that actions may be brought on such instrument of insurance, guaranty or surety directly against the insurer, guarantor or surety for any violation of this chapter by the operator up to, but not exceeding, the amount insured, guaranteed or otherwise pledged. An operator of a tank vessel or facility whose financial responsibility is accepted by the Board under this subsection shall notify the Board at least 30 days before the effective date of a change, expiration or cancellation of any instrument of insurance, guaranty or surety. Operators of facilities who are unable to demonstrate financial responsibility in the amounts established pursuant to subsection D may establish an insurance pool pursuant to the requirements of § 62.1-44.34:12 in order to demonstrate such financial responsibility.

F. Acceptance of proof of financial responsibility for tank vessels shall expire:

1. One year from the date on which the Board exempts an operator from the cash deposit requirement based on evidence of self-insurance, except that the Board may establish by regulation a different expiration date for acceptance of evidence of self-insurance submitted by public agencies;

2. On the effective date of any change in the operator's instrument of insurance, guaranty or surety; or

3. Upon the expiration or cancellation of any instrument of insurance, guaranty or surety.

Application for renewal of acceptance of proof of financial responsibility shall be filed 30 days before the date of expiration.

G. Operators of facilities shall annually demonstrate and maintain evidence of financial responsibility for containment and cleanup in accordance with regulations adopted by the Board.

H. The Board, after notice and opportunity for hearing, may revoke its acceptance of evidence of financial responsibility if it determines that:

1. Acceptance has been procured by fraud or misrepresentation; or

2. A change in circumstances has occurred that would warrant denial of acceptance of evidence of financial responsibility under this section or the requirements established by the Board pursuant to this section.

I. It is not a defense to any action brought for failure to comply with the cash deposit requirement or to provide acceptable evidence of financial responsibility that the person charged believed in good faith that the tank vessel or facility or the operator of the tank vessel or facility had made the required cash deposit or possessed evidence of financial responsibility accepted by the Board.

1990, c. 917; 1992, cc. 456, 819; 1993, c. 375; 1994, c. 196; 1999, c. 91; 2004, c. 276.

§ 62.1-44.34:17. Exemptions.

A. Sections 62.1-44.34:15 and 62.1-44.34:16 do not apply to a facility having a maximum storage or handling capacity of less than 25,000 gallons of oil or to a tank vessel having a maximum storage, handling or transporting capacity of less than 15,000 gallons of oil or to a tank used to contain oil for less than 120 days and only in connection with activities related to the containment and cleanup of oil or to any vessel engaged only in activities within state waters related to the containment and cleanup of oil, including response-related training or drills.

B. Facilities having a maximum storage or handling capacity of between 25,000 gallons and one million gallons of oil shall be exempt until July 1, 1993, from any requirement under § 62.1-44.34:15 to install ground water monitoring wells or other ground water protection devices.

C. For purposes of §§ 62.1-44.34:15 and 62.1-44.34:16, the definition of oil does not include nonpetroleum hydrocarbon-based animal and vegetable oils, or petroleum, including crude oil or any fraction thereof, which is specifically listed or designated as a hazardous substance under subparagraphs (A) through (F) of section 101 (14) of the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (42 U.S.C. § 9601) and which is subject to the provisions of that Act.

D. Facilities not engaged in the resale of oil from aboveground storage tanks shall not be subject to regulations promulgated pursuant to § 62.1-44.34:15.1 until July 1, 1995, or any date later specified by the Board.

E. Aboveground storage tanks with a capacity of 5,000 gallons or less containing heating oil for consumption on the premises where stored shall be exempt from the provisions of § 62.1-44.34:15.1.

F. For purposes of §§ 62.1-44.34:15.1 and 62.1-44.34:16, and for the purposes of any requirement under § 62.1-44.34:15 to install ground water monitoring wells, ground water protection devices, or to conduct ground water characterization studies, the definition of oil does not include asphalt and asphalt compounds which are not liquid at standard conditions of temperature and pressure (sixty degrees Fahrenheit and 14.7 pounds per square inch absolute).

1990, c. 917; 1992, c. 456; 1994, cc. 277, 460.

§ 62.1-44.34:18. Discharge of oil prohibited; liability for permitting discharge.

A. The discharge of oil into or upon state waters, lands, or storm drain systems within the Commonwealth is prohibited. For purposes of this section, discharges of oil into or upon state waters include discharges of oil that (i) violate applicable water quality standards or a permit or certificate of the Board or (ii) cause a film or sheen upon or discoloration of the surface of the water or adjoining shorelines or cause a sludge or emulsion to be deposited beneath the surface of the water or upon adjoining shorelines.

B. Any person discharging or causing or permitting a discharge of oil into or upon state waters, lands, or storm drain systems, discharging or causing or permitting a discharge of oil which may reasonably be expected to enter state waters, lands, or storm drain systems, or causing or permitting a substantial threat of such discharge and any operator of any facility, vehicle or vessel from which there is a discharge of oil into or upon state waters, lands, or storm drain systems, or from which there is a discharge of oil which may reasonably be expected to enter state waters, lands, or storm drain systems, or from which there is a substantial threat of such discharge shall, immediately upon learning of such discharge or threat of discharge, implement any applicable oil spill contingency plan approved under this article or take such other action as may be deemed necessary in the judgment of the Board to contain and clean up such discharge or threat of such discharge. In the event of such discharge or threat of discharge, if it cannot be determined immediately the person responsible therefor, or if the person is unwilling or unable to promptly contain and clean up such discharge or threat of discharge, the Board may take such action as is necessary to contain and clean up the discharge or threat of discharge, including the engagement of contractors or other competent persons.

C. Any person discharging or causing or permitting a discharge of oil into or upon state waters, lands, or storm drain systems within the Commonwealth, discharging or causing or permitting a discharge of oil which may reasonably be expected to enter state waters, lands, or storm drain systems, or causing or permitting a substantial threat of such discharge and any operator of any facility, vehicle or vessel from which there is a discharge of oil into or upon state waters, lands, or storm drain systems within the Commonwealth, or from which there is a discharge of oil which may reasonably be expected to enter state waters, lands, or storm drain systems, or from which there is a substantial threat of such discharge, shall be liable to:

1. The Commonwealth of Virginia or any political subdivision thereof for all costs and expenses of investigation, containment and cleanup incurred as a result of such discharge or threat of discharge, including, but not limited to, reasonable personnel, administrative, and equipment costs and expenses directly incurred by the Commonwealth or political subdivision, in and for preventing or alleviating damage, loss, hardship, or harm to human health or the environment caused or threatened to be caused by such discharge or threat of discharge;

2. The Commonwealth of Virginia or any political subdivision thereof for all damages to property of the Commonwealth of Virginia or the political subdivision caused by such discharge;

3. The Commonwealth of Virginia or any political subdivision thereof for loss of tax or other revenues caused by such discharge, and compensation for the loss of any natural resources that cannot be restocked, replenished or restored; and

4. Any person for injury or damage to person or property, real or personal, loss of income, loss of the means of producing income, or loss of the use of the damaged property for recreational, commercial, industrial, agricultural or other reasonable uses, caused by such discharge.

D. Notwithstanding any other provision of law, a person who renders assistance in containment and cleanup of a discharge of oil prohibited by this article or a threat of such discharge shall be liable under this section for damages for personal injury and wrongful death caused by that person's negligence, and for damages caused by that person's gross negligence or willful misconduct, but shall not be liable for any other damages or costs and expenses of containment and cleanup under this section that are caused by the acts or omissions of such person in rendering such assistance; however, such liability provision shall not apply to a person discharging or causing or permitting a discharge of oil into or upon state waters, lands, or storm drain systems, discharging or causing or permitting a discharge of oil which may reasonably be expected to enter state waters, lands, or storm drain systems, or causing or permitting a substantial threat of such discharge, or to such person's employee. Nothing in this article shall affect the right of any person who renders such assistance to reimbursement for the costs of the containment and cleanup under the applicable provisions of this article or the Federal Water Pollution Control Act, as amended, or any rights that person may have against any third party whose acts or omissions caused or contributed to the prohibited discharge of oil or threat of such discharge. In addition, a person, other than an operator, who voluntarily, without compensation, and upon the request of a governmental agency, assists in the containment or cleanup of a discharge of oil, shall not be liable for any civil damages resulting from any act or omission on his part in the course of his rendering such assistance in good faith; nor shall any person or any organization exempt from income taxation under § 501(c) (3) of the Internal Revenue Code who notifies or assists in notifying the membership of such organization to assist in the containment or cleanup of a discharge of oil, voluntarily, without compensation, and upon the request of a government agency, be liable for any civil damages resulting from such notification rendered in good faith.

E. In any action brought under this article, it shall not be necessary for the Commonwealth, political subdivision or any person, to plead or prove negligence in any form or manner.

F. In any action brought under this article, the Commonwealth, political subdivision or any person, if a prevailing party, shall be entitled to an award of reasonable attorneys' fees and costs.

G. It shall be a defense to any action brought under subdivision C 2, C 3, or C 4 of this section that the discharge was caused solely by (i) an act of God, (ii) an act of war, (iii) a willful act or omission of a third party who is not an employee, agent or contractor of the operator, or (iv) any combination of the foregoing; however, this subsection shall not apply to any action brought against (a) a person or operator who failed or refused to report a discharge as required by § 62.1-44.34:19; or (b) a person or operator who failed or refused to cooperate fully in any containment and cleanup or who failed or refused to effect containment and cleanup as required by subsection B of this section.

H. In any action brought under subdivision C 2, C 3, or C 4 of this section, the total liability of a person or operator under this section for each discharge of oil or threat of such discharge shall not exceed the amount of financial responsibility required under § 62.1-44.34:16 or $10,000,000, whichever is greater; however, there shall be no limit of liability imposed under this section: (a) if the discharge of oil or threat of such discharge was caused by gross negligence or willful misconduct on the part of the person or the operator discharging or causing or permitting discharge or threat of discharge or by an agent, employee or contractor of such person or operator, or by the violation of any applicable safety, construction or operation regulations by such person or operator or an agent, employee or contractor of such person or operator; or (b) if the operator or person discharging or causing or permitting a discharge or threat of discharge failed or refused to report the discharge as required by § 62.1-44.34:19, or failed or refused to cooperate fully in any containment and cleanup or to effect containment and cleanup as required by subsection B of this section.

I. An operator that incurs costs pursuant to subsection B shall have the right to recover all or part of such costs in an action for contribution against any person or persons whose acts or omissions caused or contributed to the discharge or threat of discharge. In resolving contribution claims under this article, the court may allocate costs among the parties using such equitable factors as the court deems appropriate.

J. Any person or operator who pays costs or damages pursuant to subsection C shall have the right to recover all or part of such costs or damages in an action for contribution against any person or persons whose act or omission has caused or contributed to the discharge or threat of discharge. In resolving contribution claims under this article, the court may allocate costs or damages among the parties using such equitable factors as the court deems appropriate.

1973, c. 417; 1976, c. 51; 1978, c. 816; 1989, c. 627; 1990, cc. 917, 962; 1992, c. 456; 1998, cc. 90, 836.

§ 62.1-44.34:19. Reporting of discharge.

A. Any person discharging or causing or permitting a discharge of oil into or upon state waters, lands, or storm drain systems within the Commonwealth or discharging or causing or permitting a discharge of oil which may reasonably be expected to enter state waters, lands, or storm drain systems within the Commonwealth, and any operator of any facility, vehicle or vessel from which there is a discharge of oil into state waters, lands, or storm drain systems, or from which there is a discharge of oil which may reasonably be expected to enter state waters, lands, or storm drain systems, shall, immediately upon learning of the discharge, notify the Board, the director or coordinator of emergency services appointed pursuant to § 44-146.19 for the political subdivision in which the discharge occurs and any other political subdivision reasonably expected to be affected by the discharge, and appropriate federal authorities of such discharge. Notice will be deemed to have been given under this section for any discharge of oil to state lands in amounts less than twenty-five gallons if the recordkeeping requirements of subsection C of § 62.1-44.34:19.2 have been met and the oil has been cleaned up in accordance with the requirements of this article.

B. Observations and data gathered as a result of the monthly and quarterly inspection activities required by § 62.1-44.34:15.1 (1) (d) shall be maintained on site pursuant to § 62.1-44.34:19. 2, and compiled into a summary, on a form developed by the Board, such summary to be submitted to the Board annually on a schedule established by the Board. Should any such observations or data indicate the presence of petroleum hydrocarbons in ground water, the results shall be reported immediately to the Board and to the local director or coordinator of emergency services appointed pursuant to § 44-146.19.

1978, c. 816; 1990, cc. 917, 962; 1992, c. 456.

§ 62.1-44.34:19.1. Registration of aboveground storage tanks.

A. The Board shall compile an inventory of facilities with an aboveground storage capacity of more than 1320 gallons of oil or individual aboveground storage tanks having a storage capacity of more than 660 gallons of oil within the Commonwealth. To develop such an inventory, the Board is hereby authorized to develop regulations regarding registration requirements for facilities and aboveground storage tanks. In adopting such regulations, the Board shall consider whether any registration program required under federal law or regulations is sufficient for purposes of this section.

B. Within ninety days of the effective date of the regulations referred to in subsection A, the operators of a facility shall register the facility with the Board and the local director or coordinator of emergency services appointed pursuant to § 44-146.19, and provide an inventory of aboveground storage tanks at the facility. If the Board determines that registration under federal law or regulations is inadequate for the purpose of compiling its inventory and that additional registration requirements are necessary, the Board is authorized to assess a fee, according to a schedule based on the size and type of the facility or tank, not to exceed $100 per facility or $50 per tank, whichever is less. Such fee shall be paid at the time of registration or registration renewal. Registration shall be renewed every five years or whenever title to a facility or tank is transferred, whichever first occurs.

C. The operator shall, within thirty days after the upgrade, repair, replacement, or closure of an existing tank or installation of a new tank, notify the Board in writing of such upgrade, repair, replacement, closure or installation.

1992, c. 456.

§ 62.1-44.34:19.2. Recordkeeping and access to records and facilities.

A. All records relating to compliance with the requirements of this article shall be maintained by the operator of a facility at the facility or at an alternate location approved by the Board for a period of at least five years. Such records shall be available for inspection and copying by the Board and shall include books, papers, documents and records relating to the daily measurement and inventory of oil stored at a facility, all information relating to tank testing, all records relating to spill events or other discharges of oil from the facility, all supporting documentation for developed contingency plans, and any records required to be kept by regulations of the Board.

B. In the case of a pipeline, all records relating to compliance with the requirements of the Hazardous Liquid Pipeline Safety Act of 1979, all records relating to spill events or other discharges of oil from the pipeline in the Commonwealth, and all supporting documentation for approved contingency plans shall be maintained by the operator of a pipeline at the facility or at an alternate location approved by the Board for a period of at least five years.

C. A record of all discharges of oil to state lands in amounts less than twenty-five gallons shall be established and maintained for a period of five years in accordance with subsections A and B of this section.

D. Every operator of a facility shall, upon reasonable notice, permit at reasonable times and under reasonable circumstances a duly designated official of the political subdivision in which the facility is located or of any political subdivision within one mile of the facility or duly designated agent retained or employed by such political subdivisions to have access to and to copy all information required to be kept in subsections A, B and C.

E. Any duly designated official of the political subdivision in which the facility is located or of any political subdivision within one mile of the facility or duly designated agent retained or employed by such political subdivisions may, at reasonable times and under reasonable circumstances, enter and inspect any facility, provided that in nonemergency situations such local official, agent or employee shall be accompanied by the operator or his designee.

1992, c. 456.

§ 62.1-44.34:20. Enforcement and penalties.

A. Upon a finding of a violation of this article or a regulation or term or condition of approval issued pursuant to this article, the Board is authorized to issue a special order requiring any person to cease and desist from causing or permitting such violation or requiring any person to comply with any such provision, regulation or term or condition of approval. Such special orders shall be issued only after notice and an opportunity for hearing except that, if the Board finds that any discharge in violation of this article poses a serious threat to (i) the public health, safety or welfare or the health of animals, fish, botanic or aquatic life; (ii) a public water supply; or (iii) recreational, commercial, industrial, agricultural or other reasonable uses, the Board may issue, without advance notice or hearing, an emergency special order requiring the operator of any facility, vehicle or vessel to cease such discharge immediately, to implement any applicable contingency plan and to effect containment and cleanup. Such emergency special order may also require the operator of a facility to modify or cease regular operation of the facility, or any portion thereof, until the Board determines that continuing regular operation of the facility, or such portion thereof, will not pose a substantial threat of additional or continued discharges. The Board shall affirm, modify, amend or cancel any such emergency order after providing notice and opportunity for hearing to the operator charged with the violation. The notice of the hearing and the emergency order shall be issued at the same time. If an operator who has been issued such a special order or an emergency special order is not complying with the terms thereof, the Board may proceed in accordance with subsection B of this section, and where the order is based on a finding of an imminent and substantial danger, the court shall issue an injunction compelling compliance with the emergency special order pending a hearing by the Board. If an emergency special order requires modification or cessation of operations, the Board shall provide an opportunity for a hearing within 48 hours of the issuance of the injunction.

B. In the event of a violation of this article or a regulation, administrative or judicial order, or term or condition of approval issued under this article, or in the event of failure to comply with a special order issued by the Board pursuant to this section, the Board is authorized to proceed by civil action to obtain an injunction of such violation, to obtain such affirmative equitable relief as is appropriate and to recover all costs, damages and civil penalties resulting from such violation or failure to comply. The Board shall be entitled to an award of reasonable attorneys' fees and costs in any action in which it is a prevailing party.

C. Any person who violates or causes or permits to be violated a provision of this article, or a regulation, administrative or judicial order, or term or condition of approval issued under this article, shall be subject to a civil penalty for each such violation as follows:

1. For failing to obtain approval of an oil discharge contingency plan as required by § 62.1-44.34:15, not less than $1,000 nor more than $50,000 for the initial violation, and $5,000 per day for each day of violation thereafter;

2. For failing to maintain evidence of financial responsibility as required by § 62.1-44.34:16, not less than $1,000 nor more than $100,000 for the initial violation, and $5,000 per day for each day of violation thereafter;

3. For discharging or causing or permitting a discharge of oil into or upon state waters, or owning or operating any facility, vessel or vehicle from which such discharge originates in violation of § 62.1-44.34:18, up to $100 per gallon of oil discharged;

4. For failing to cooperate in containment and cleanup of a discharge as required by § 62.1-44.34:18 or for failing to report a discharge as required by § 62.1-44.34:19, not less than $1,000 nor more than $50,000 for the initial violation, and $10,000 for each day of violation thereafter; and

5. For violating or causing or permitting to be violated any other provision of this article, or a regulation, administrative or judicial order, or term or condition of approval issued under this article, up to $32,500 for each violation. Each day of violation of each requirement shall constitute a separate offense.

D. Civil penalties may be assessed under this article either by a court in an action brought by the Board pursuant to this section, as specified in § 62.1-44.15, or with the consent of the person charged, in a special order issued by the Board. All penalties shall be paid into the state treasury and deposited by the State Treasurer into the Virginia Underground Petroleum Storage Tank Fund as established in § 62.1-44.34:11. In determining the amount of any penalty, consideration shall be given to the willfulness of the violation, any history of noncompliance, the actions of the person in reporting, containing and cleaning up any discharge or threat of discharge, the damage or injury to state waters or the impairment of their beneficial use, the cost of containment and cleanup, the nature and degree of injury to or interference with general health, welfare and property, and the available technology for preventing, containing, reducing or eliminating the discharge.

E. Any person who knowingly violates, or causes or permits to be violated, a provision of this article, or a regulation, administrative or judicial order, or term or condition of approval issued under this article shall be guilty of a misdemeanor punishable by confinement in jail for not more than 12 months and a fine of not more than $100,000, either or both. Any person who knowingly or willfully makes any false statement, representation or certification in any application, record, report, plan or other document filed or required to be maintained by this article or by administrative or judicial order issued under this article shall be guilty of a felony punishable by a term of imprisonment of not less than one nor more than three years and a fine of not more than $100,000, either or both. In the case of a discharge of oil into or upon state waters:

1. Any person who negligently discharges or negligently causes or permits such discharge shall be guilty of a misdemeanor punishable by confinement in jail for not more than 12 months and a fine of not more than $50,000, either or both.

2. Any person who knowingly and willfully discharges or knowingly and willfully causes or permits such discharge shall be guilty of a felony punishable by a term of imprisonment of not less than one year nor more than 10 years and a fine of not more than $100,000, either or both.

F. Each day of violation of each requirement shall constitute a separate offense. In the event the violation of this article follows a prior felony conviction under subdivision E 2 of this section, such violation shall constitute a felony and shall be punishable by a term of imprisonment of not less than two years nor more than 10 years and a fine of not more than $200,000, either or both.

G. Upon conviction for a violation of any provision of this article, or a regulation, administrative or judicial order, or term or condition of approval issued under this article, a defendant who is not an individual shall be sentenced to pay a fine not exceeding the greater of:

1. $1 million; or

2. An amount that is three times the economic benefit, if any, realized by the defendant as a result of the offense.

H. Any tank vessel entering upon state waters which fails to provide evidence of financial responsibility required by § 62.1-44.34:16, and any vessel from which oil is discharged into or upon state waters, may be detained and held as security for payment to the Commonwealth of any damages or penalties assessed under this section. Such damages and penalties shall constitute a lien on the vessel and the lien shall secure all costs of containment and cleanup, damages, fines and penalties, as the case may be, for which the operator may be liable. The vessel shall be released upon posting of a bond with surety in the maximum amount of such damages or penalties.

1990, c. 917; 1992, c. 456; 2005, c. 706.

§ 62.1-44.34:21. Administrative fees.

A. The Board is authorized to collect from any applicant for approval of an oil discharge contingency plan and from any operator seeking acceptance of evidence of financial responsibility fees sufficient to meet, but not exceed, the costs of the Board related to implementation of § 62.1-44.34:15 as to an applicant for approval of an oil discharge contingency plan and of § 62.1-44.34:16 as to an operator seeking acceptance of evidence of financial responsibility. The Board shall establish by regulation a schedule of fees that takes into account the nature and type of facility and the effect of any prior professional certification or federal review or approval on the level of review required by the Board. All such fees received by the Board shall be used exclusively to implement the provisions of this article.

B. Fees charged an applicant should reflect the average time and complexity of processing approvals in each of the various categories.

C. When adopting regulations for fees, the Board shall take into account the fees charged in neighboring states, and the importance of not placing existing or prospective industries in the Commonwealth at a competitive disadvantage. Within six months of receipt of any federal moneys that would offset the costs of implementing this article, the Board shall review the amount of fees set by regulation to determine the amount of fees which should be refunded. Such refunds shall only be required if the fees plus the federal moneys received for the implementation of the program under this article as it applies to facilities exceed the actual cost to the Board of administering the program.

D. On October 1, 1995, and every two years thereafter, the Board shall make an evaluation of the implementation of the fee programs and provide this evaluation in writing to the Senate Committees on Agriculture, Conservation and Natural Resources, and Finance; and the House Committees on Appropriations, Chesapeake and Its Tributaries, and Finance.

1990, c. 917; 1992, c. 345.

§ 62.1-44.34:22. Applicability of Administrative Process Act.

The Administrative Process Act (§ 2.2-4000 et seq.) shall govern the activities and the proceedings of the Board under this article.

1990, c. 917.

§ 62.1-44.34:23. Exceptions.

A. Nothing in this article shall apply to: (i) normal discharges from properly functioning vehicles and equipment, marine engines, outboard motors or hydroelectric facilities; (ii) accidental discharges from farm vehicles or noncommercial vehicles; (iii) accidental discharges from the fuel tanks of commercial vehicles or vessels that have a fuel tank capacity of 150 gallons or less; (iv) discharges authorized by a valid permit issued by the Board pursuant to § 62.1-44.15 (5) or by the United States Environmental Protection Agency; (v) underground storage tanks regulated under a state program; (vi) releases from underground storage tanks as defined in § 62.1-44.34:8, regardless of when the release occurred; (vii) discharges of hydrostatic test media from a pipeline undergoing a hydrostatic test in accordance with federal pipeline safety regulations; or (viii) discharges authorized by the federal on-scene coordinator and the Executive Director or his designee in connection with activities related to the recovery of spilled oil where such activities are undertaken to minimize overall environmental damage due to an oil spill into or on state waters. However, the exception provided in clause (viii) shall in no way reduce the liability of the person who initially spilled the oil which is being recovered.

B. Notwithstanding the exemption set forth in clause (vi) of subsection A of this section, a political subdivision may recover pursuant to subsection C of § 62.1-44.34:18 for a discharge of oil into or upon state waters, lands, or storm drain systems from an underground storage tank regulated under a state program at facilities with an aggregate capacity of one million gallons or greater.

1978, c. 816; 1987, c. 677; 1990, c. 917; 1992, cc. 302, 456; 1993, cc. 18, 231; 1994, c. 416.