FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Nov. 2, 2012
AIR "FEE HOLIDAY" ENCOURAGES BUSINESSES TO REDUCE POLLUTION
~One-time regulatory cost savings made possible through Department efficiencies~
TALLAHASSEE –The Florida Department of Environmental Protection is offering a one-time "fee holiday" for businesses that fall below a $5,000 annual air emissions fee threshold. About 300 Florida small businesses are eligible to benefit from this regulatory cost savings by minimizing pollution.
Small businesses -- including manufacturers of fiberglass boats, wood products and large-scale bakeries -- as well as large businesses, such as power plants, are required to pay fees based on pollution they emit as part of the federal Title V air program, which is administered by the Department. Federal law requires the Department to spend those fees on controlling air emissions at those facilities. In 2011, the fees paid by small businesses accounted for less than five percent of the annual emissions-based fees collected by the Department.
"This has been a great opportunity for Florida's small businesses to enjoy a savings to help our economy," said Brian Accardo, the Department's Division of Air Resource Management Director. "And it helps the environment by encouraging businesses to reduce their air emissions."
The Division announced the fee holiday in the spring, which allowed Florida's small businesses with a Title V air permit to manage a reduction of air emissions in order to qualify. Businesses calculate air emissions through the calendar year and are required to submit fee forms to the
Department by March 1 to qualify for the cost savings. Businesses still have two months left to reduce emissions this year.
process improvements and with the cooperation of local government air
regulation programs, the Department realized cost savings that allows this
temporary financial relief to Florida businesses. Because the Department has improved its implementation of the program, Florida businesses that fund
the program can be rewarded by the program’s success.
This system, in which the polluter pays to control pollution, has
produced significant environmental benefits. Since 1992, annual
emissions of key industrial pollutants have decreased nearly 75 percent,
even as industrial production and power generation have increased. As a
result, Florida's air quality has improved.
For more information, visit www.title5feeholiday.com.