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First Substitute H.B. 132
7 LONG TITLE
8 General Description:
9 This bill modifies and enacts provisions of the Water Quality Act.
10 Highlighted Provisions:
11 This bill:
12 . authorizes the Water Quality Board to make rules relating to agriculture water that
13 are more stringent than federal regulations if the Conservation Commission
15 . requires board and commission cooperation in making rules related to agriculture
16 water; and
17 . establishes provisions relating to damages resulting from an agriculture discharge.
18 Money Appropriated in this Bill:
20 Other Special Clauses:
22 Utah Code Sections Affected:
24 19-5-102, as last amended by Laws of Utah 2001, Chapter 274
25 19-5-105, as renumbered and amended by Laws of Utah 1991, Chapter 112
27 19-5-105.5, Utah Code Annotated 1953
29 Be it enacted by the Legislature of the state of Utah:
30 Section 1. Section 19-5-102 is amended to read:
31 19-5-102. Definitions.
32 As used in this chapter:
33 (1) "Agriculture discharge":
34 (a) means the release of agriculture water from the property of a farm, ranch, or feed lot
36 (i) pollutes a surface body of water, including a stream, lake, pond, marshland,
37 watercourse, waterway, river, ditch, and other water conveyance system of the state;
38 (ii) pollutes the ground water of the state; or
39 (iii) constitutes a significant nuisance on urban land; and
40 (b) does not include:
41 (i) runoff from a farm, ranch, or feed lot or return flows from irrigated fields onto land
42 that is not part of a body of water; or
43 (ii) a release into a normally dry water conveyance to an active body of water, unless
44 the release reaches the water of a lake, pond, stream, marshland, river, or other active body of
46 (2) "Agriculture water" means:
47 (a) water used by a farmer, rancher, or feed lot for the production of food, fiber, or fuel;
48 (b) return flows from irrigated agriculture; and
49 (c) agricultural storm water runoff.
51 (4) "Commission" means the Conservation Commission created in Section 4-18-4 .
53 substance or matter in water.
56 (a) discharges or whose activities would probably result in a discharge of pollutants
57 into the waters of the state; or
58 (b) generates or manages sewage sludge.
60 sewerage systems and treatment works.
62 including schedules of compliance established under this chapter which apply to discharges.
65 (a) means any discernible, confined, and discrete conveyance, including but not limited
66 to any pipe, ditch, channel, tunnel, conduit, well, discrete fissure, container, rolling stock,
67 concentrated animal feeding operation, or vessel or other floating craft, from which pollutants
68 are or may be discharged; and
69 (b) does not include return flows from irrigated agriculture.
71 physical, biological, or radiological integrity of any waters of the state, unless the alteration is
72 necessary for the public health and safety.
74 pollutants owned by the state, its political subdivisions, or other public entity.
76 including an enforceable sequence of actions or operations leading to compliance with this
79 during the treatment of municipal wastewater or domestic sewage.
81 other constructions, devices, appurtenances, and facilities used for collecting or conducting
82 wastes to a point of ultimate disposal.
84 station, incinerator, or other works used for the purpose of treating, stabilizing, or holding
87 well injection.
89 domestic wastewater discharges as defined by the board and the executive director.
91 residue, sewage, garbage, sewage sludge, munitions, chemical wastes, biological materials,
92 radioactive materials, heat, wrecked or discarded equipment, rock, sand, cellar dirt, and
93 industrial, municipal, and agricultural waste discharged into water.
95 (a) means all streams, lakes, ponds, marshes, watercourses, waterways, wells, springs,
96 irrigation systems, drainage systems, and all other bodies or accumulations of water, surface
97 and underground, natural or artificial, public or private, which are contained within, flow
98 through, or border upon this state or any portion of the state; and
99 (b) does not include bodies of water confined to and retained within the limits of
100 private property, and which do not develop into or constitute a nuisance, a public health hazard,
101 or a menace to fish or wildlife.
102 Section 2. Section 19-5-105 is amended to read:
103 19-5-105. Rulemaking authority and procedure.
104 (1) Except as provided in [
105 board makes for the purpose of the state administering a program under the federal Clean
106 Water Act or the federal Safe Drinking Water Act may be more stringent than the
107 corresponding federal regulations which address the same circumstances. In making rules, the
108 board may incorporate by reference corresponding federal regulations.
109 (2) The board may make rules more stringent than corresponding federal regulations
110 for the purpose described in Subsection (1), only if it makes a written finding after public
111 comment and hearing and based on evidence in the record that the corresponding federal
112 regulations are not adequate to protect public health and the environment of the state. Those
113 findings shall be accompanied by an opinion referring to and evaluating the public health and
114 environmental information and studies contained in the record which form the basis for the
115 board's conclusion.
116 (3) The board may make rules related to agriculture water more stringent than the
117 corresponding federal regulations if the commission approves.
118 Section 3. Section 19-5-105.5 is enacted to read:
119 19-5-105.5. Agriculture water.
120 (1) (a) The board shall draft any rules relating to agriculture water in cooperation with
121 the commission.
122 (b) The commission shall advise the board before the board may adopt rules relating to
123 agriculture water.
124 (2) A program or rule adopted by the board for agriculture production or irrigation
125 water shall:
126 (a) be consistent with the federal Clean Water Act; and
127 (b) if possible, be developed in a voluntary cooperative program with the agriculture
128 producer associations and the commission.
129 (3) (a) The board's authority to regulate a discharge is subject to Subsection (3)(b)
130 relating to an agriculture discharge.
131 (b) (i) A person responsible for an agriculture discharge shall mitigate the resulting
132 damage in a reasonable manner, as approved by the executive secretary after consulting with
133 the commission chair.
134 (ii) A penalty imposed on an agriculture discharge shall be proportionate to the
135 seriousness of the resulting harm, as determined by the executive secretary in consultation with
136 the commission chair.
137 (iii) An agriculture producer may not be held liable for an agriculture discharge
138 resulting from a large weather event if the agriculture producer has taken reasonable measures
139 to prevent an agriculture discharge.
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