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2020 Special Session I

Budget Bill - SB5015 (Introduced)

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Secretary of Natural Resources

Item 372

Item 372

First Year - FY2021Second Year - FY2022
Administrative and Support Services (79900)$748,431$748,431
General Management and Direction (79901)FY2021 $748,431FY2022 $748,431
Fund Sources: 
GeneralFY2021 $640,939FY2022 $640,939
Federal TrustFY2021 $107,492FY2022 $107,492

Authority: Title 2.2, Chapter 2, Article 7; and § 2.2-201, Code of Virginia.


A. The Secretary of Natural Resources shall report to the Chairmen of the Senate Committees on Finance and Agriculture, Conservation, and Natural Resources, and the House Committees on Appropriations and Conservation and Natural Resources, by November 4 of each year on implementation of the Chesapeake Bay nutrient reduction strategies. The report shall include and address the progress and costs of point source and nonpoint source pollution strategies. The report shall include, but not be limited to, information on levels of dissolved oxygen, acres of submerged aquatic vegetation, computer modeling, variety and numbers of living resources, and other relevant measures for the General Assembly to evaluate the progress and effectiveness of the tributary strategies. In addition, the Secretary shall include information on the status of all of Virginia's commitments to the Chesapeake Bay Agreements.


B. It is the intent of the General Assembly that a reserve be created within the Virginia Water Quality Improvement Fund to support the purposes delineated within the Virginia Water Quality Improvement Act of 1997 (WQIA 1997) when year-end general fund surpluses are unavailable. Consequently, 15 percent of any amounts appropriated to the Virginia Water Quality Improvement Fund due to annual general fund revenue collections in excess of the official estimates contained in the general appropriation act shall be withheld from appropriation, unless otherwise specified. When annual general fund revenue collections do not exceed the official revenue estimates contained in the general appropriation act, the reserve fund may be used for WQIA 1997 purposes as directed by the General Assembly within the general appropriation act.


C. The Secretary of Natural Resources, with the assistance of the Directors of the Department of Conservation and Recreation, the Department of Environmental Quality, the Department of Game and Inland Fisheries, and the Department of Historic Resources, shall provide an annual report to the Chairmen of the House Appropriations and Senate Finance Committees of all projects undertaken pursuant to a settlement or mitigation agreement upon which the Secretary of Natural Resources is an authorized signatory on behalf of the Governor by November 15 each year until all terms of the settlement or mitigation agreement are satisfied. In addition, whenever a settlement or mitigation agreement is finalized, the Secretary shall provide a copy of, and explanation of, the terms of such settlement to the Chairmen of the House Appropriations and Senate Finance Committees within 15 days.


D.1. There is hereby established the Interagency Environmental Justice Working Group, to be comprised of 10 environmental justice coordinators representing each of the Governor's Secretaries. The Secretary of Natural Resources shall designate a chairman and vice chairman from among the membership of the Working Group.


2. The Working Group shall conduct an assessment of the processes and resources required of state agencies to develop agency-specific environmental justice policies. In conducting its assessment, the Working Group shall provide that agency policies at a minimum: (i) ensure environmental justice is meaningfully considered in the administration of agency regulations; (ii) consistently identify environmental justice communities and fenceline communities; (iii) identify how such communities are affected by agencies' regulatory activities; (iv) consider the economic development and infrastructure needs of environmental justice communities and fenceline communities in agency decision-making processes; and (v) contain robust public participation plans for residents of environmental justice communities and fenceline communities potentially affected by agency actions.


3. The Working Group shall provide the findings of its assessment, and associated recommendations, to the Chairs of the House Appropriations and Senate Finance and Appropriations Committees by December 1, 2020.


E.The Secretary of Natural Resources, in consultation with the Secretary of Agriculture and Forestry, shall study and develop a plan to require landfill operators pay a solid waste disposal fee, or a tipping fee, for each ton of solid waste received at the landfill. Such fee shall be in addition to any fee established by a locality pursuant to § 15.2-2159, Code of Virginia. The plan shall include recommendations for the amount and structure of any proposed fee, and recommendations for use of any revenue that may be generated from such fee. The plan shall be submitted to the Governor and General Assembly no later than November 1, 2020.