The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (the “DEC”) recently proposed changes to its regulations governing enforcement hearing procedures under 6 NYCRR Part 622.
The proposed rule change to Part 622 would “clarify the hearing process for administrative enforcement proceedings by: 1) making the regulations clearer and more accessible; 2) conforming the regulations to agency and judicial precedent; 3) correcting minor grammatical and typographical errors; 4) updating the regulations to reflect current use of electronic communications and discovery of electronically stored information; 5) correcting the regulations to reflect the current designation of the Office of Hearings and Mediation Service; 6) adding a section addressing mediation practice after an enforcement proceeding has been commenced; 7) extending the applicability of Part 622 to expedited proceedings commenced pursuant to 6 NYCRR Part 613 regarding petroleum product delivery prohibitions; 8) clarifying the contents of papers for commencing a proceeding; and 9) adding requirements for adjudicating defaults.”
The changes would also amend the definitions sections of 6 NYCRR Part 620 (Procedures for Issuance of Summary Abatement Orders) and Part 624 (Permit Hearing Procedures) to make the definitions consistent throughout Parts 620, 622, and 624.
The changes would also require that a copy of a written request for a hearing — made pursuant to 6 NYRR 621.10(a), 621.11(g), and 621.13(d) — be provided to the Chief Administrative Law Judge.
These changes will undoubtedly be important for those who find themselves subject to enforcement proceedings, as well as practitioners representing such parties. That’s why interested parties should be sure to submit comments on the proposed changes no later than January 31, 2020 at 5:00PM. Comments can be submitted to Administrative Law Judge (ALJ) Michael S. Caruso, NYS DEC Office of Hearings and Mediation Services, 625 Broadway, 1st Floor, Albany, NY 12233-1550, or by emailed to ALJ Caruso at firstname.lastname@example.org.
A hearing will also be held on the proposed rules change on January 7, 2020 at 1:00PM at NYS DEC, 625 Broadway, Public Assembly Room 129A/B, Albany, NY 12233. The hearing is open to the general public.
If you have questions about this proposed rule change, would like help preparing comments on the rules change, or have inquiries related to enforcement actions by the DEC or another agency, please contact Jacob H. Zoghlin, Esq. or Mindy L. Zoghlin, Esq.
See “Hearing and Mediation Services Regulatory Revisions,” New York State Department of Environmental Conservation, Regulations and Enforcement, Proposed, Emergency, and Recently Adopted Regulations, available at http://www.dec.ny.gov/regulations/118492.html.
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