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PA EPA ESTABLISHES ENFORCEMENT HELPLINE TO PROVIDE ADVICE TO STATES AND LOCAL GOVERNMENTS

Release Date: 12/19/97
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FOR RELEASE: FRIDAY, DECEMBER 19, 1997
EPA ESTABLISHES ENFORCEMENT HELPLINE TO PROVIDE ADVICE
TO STATES AND LOCAL GOVERNMENTS

EPA has established a helpline to provide state and local government environmental enforcement agencies with advice regarding financial issues that impact enforcement cases. The main inquiries EPA expects to address with this helpline are the calculation of a violator’s economic savings or gain from violating the law, and the evaluation of a violator’s claim that it cannot afford to comply, clean up, or pay its civil penalty; evaluates an individual taxpayer’s claim that he or she cannot afford compliance costs, clean-up costs or civil penalties; evaluates the claim of a municipality, county, town, village, sewer authority, drinking water authority or regulated utility that it cannot afford compliance costs, clean-up costs or civil penalties; and calculates the real cost to a defendant of a proposed supplemental environmental project. Callers will be able to obtain advice about running key models EPA uses and how to access training courses to understand the models. Inquiries regarding the interpretation of federal statutes and EPA policies will be referred to the EPA. The toll-free helpline phone number is 888-ECONSPT (326-6778). It is staffed by a contractor, Industrial Economics Inc., of Cambridge, Mass. The helpline is in operation from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. (est); it will accept voice mail messages when it is not in operation. There is also an e-mail address: benabel@indecon.com. Callers should state whether they can protect any requested information from private parties — this will expedite the shipment of enforcement-sensitive documents. For further information, call Jonathan Libber of EPA’s Office of Enforcement and Compliance Assurance at 202-564-6102 or e-mail him at libber.jonathan@epamail.epa.gov.


R-176 ###