Wisconsin Department of Commerce Newsletter
April 2005
PECFA Does Not Cover New Releases - Private Pollution Insurance Required

Responsible parties (RP's) for all operating stations and other commercial fuel dispensing facilities installed after December 22, 1988, which meet COMM 10 requirements for new underground storage tank (UST) systems, continue to require private pollution insurance after December 31, 1995 unless they meet the test of self insurance. Releases from these systems after December 31, 1995 are not eligible for PECFA funding.

Releases detected after December 31, 1995, from upgraded UST systems are also not eligible for PECFA funding and private pollution insurance or self insurance has been required from that date forward. However, tank systems upgraded after December 31, 1993 were eligible for PECFA funding if, within 30 days of completing the upgrade, pollution insurance was applied for and a release was detected within 90 days of completing the upgrade.

Releases detected after December 22, 2001, from above ground storage (AST) systems installed or upgraded after May 1, 1991 are not PECFA eligible. Presently, private pollution insurance is not required for AST systems; however, funding to remediate contamination detected after December 22, 2001 is the RP's responsibility.

- Berni Mattsson

File Those PECFA Claims
On February 24, 2004, the Wisconsin Department of Commerce (Commerce) sent letters to site owners indicating they had met a PECFA claim submittal milestone, and asked them to file a claim. Subsequent to that letter, Commerce followed up with a phone call, to remind owners to file their claims by July 1, 2004 or interest costs could be denied.

Due to the lack of response to the request, a second letter was sent August 27, 2004, notifying owners they had until January 3, 2005 to submit a claim or interest would be denied beginning January 4, 2005. A total of 107 letters were sent, followed by phone calls to owners and their consultants.

To date, 14% of these claims have not been submitted, and 3% of claims were received after January 3, 2005. Interest will be denied beginning January 4, 2005 until the date the claim is received by Commerce. For example, if a claim was received on January 10, 2005, it will result in the denial of six days of interest from January 4, 2005 through January 9, 2005. Any outstanding claims should be filed as soon as possible to avoid further interest denial.

PECFA Site Tracker on the Web
In an effort to make information more accessible, Commerce has placed parts of the database that the Site Review and Claims sections use for tracking decisions, on the web.

This information can be found on the PECFA web site. A single click on the link titled "Tracker on the Web" will move you to the search page for the application. Site searches can be completed using Commerce number (no hyphens), BRRTS number (no hyphens), site address, as well as others.

Once your site or sites pop up, click on the appropriate Occurrence ID (blue link) and the information will be displayed. Here is a list of some of the codes used in Tracker:

SI = Site investigation Report - This submittal entry means that a Site Investigation Report has been submitted and, depending on approval or disapproval status, there may be additional submittals immediately following this activity.

RA = Remedial Action - This submittal entry is an approval or denial for a number of sub-codes; .338, .337, .335, etc.
These are Comm 47 sub-codes that are being applied to the remedial action plan.

CLS = Closure

This submittal entry can be entered multiple times. Where only one entry appears, and is approved, the case is likely conditionally closed and Commerce is waiting for the documentation required prior to issuing a final closure letter. If the site was closed in the early to late 90's, likely it is a soil only site and only one closure entry may be present.

Be aware that the information in Tracker is from the current PECFA database. Some of this data, including but not limited to, eligibility, tank type, and maximum reimbursement amount, is subject to change based on new information that is received.

Reporting to Begin May 1, 2005
Reporting for PECFA sites is to begin May 1, 2005, and continue a minimum of 30 days past the effective date of the revised Administrative Rule, Comm 47. The deadline for reporting will be posted on the PECFA web site when it has been confirmed.

This year, two forms are to be completed: an Annual Reporting form, and an Occurrence Classification form. These forms can be completed on the web through a link labeled "Annual Site Reporting Page", which will be available on the PECFA web site starting May 1, 2005.

After selecting the reporting link on the PECFA home page, you will be prompted to enter the Commerce number for the site for which you are reporting; you will then be guided through the process of completing and submitting the required information for each occurrence. To prevent errors, please read each page (form) in its entirety before answering the questions. Examples will be available on the reporting web site to allow you to prepare answers.

The Annual Reporting form includes questions similar to those included in previous questionnaires and is required for all open sites. The Occurrence Classification form is to be completed for only those sites that have not been included in the competitive public bidding process or home heating oil tanks.

If you do not have to complete the Occurrence Classification form, the program will not permit you to proceed into the Occurrence Classification page and it will prompt you to submit the Annual Reporting form once it is completed.

If your occurrence requires you to complete the Occurrence Classification form, the program will transition into this page and will not allow you to submit any information until the Occurrence Classification form is completed.

All registered PECFA consultants will receive a reminder letter, prior to May 1, 2005, providing additional details. This year there will be no personal identification numbers required and either consultants or claimants may complete the questionnaires. However, an occurrence may only be reported once. Commerce strongly encourages you to complete your reporting requirements soon after the web site becomes available May 1, 2005. Note that the revised Comm 47 rule states that the Occurrence Classification form must be completed within 30 days of the effective date of the rule or no additional PECFA funds will be reimbursed.

Questions regarding reporting should be directed to Shawn Wenzel, 608-261-5401, or siteclassification@commerce.state.wi.us.

- Berni Mattsson

The newsletter is issued electronically every other month.

Please send comments or questions to Barbro McGinn, editor.

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