Legislature(2011 - 2012)
2012-04-13 Senate JournalFull Journal pdf
2012-04-13 Senate Journal Page 2229 HB 258 The Finance Committee considered CS FOR HOUSE BILL NO. 258(FIN) "An Act directing the Department of Transportation and Public Facilities to develop and implement standards and operating procedures, to evaluate site-specific use plans, and to designate project areas concerning gravel or other aggregate material containing 2012-04-13 Senate Journal Page 2230 naturally occurring asbestos; authorizing use on an interim basis of gravel or other aggregate material containing naturally occurring asbestos for certain transportation projects and public facilities; providing immunity for the state and for landowners, extractors, suppliers, transporters, and contractors for certain actions or claims arising in connection with the use of gravel or aggregate material containing naturally occurring asbestos in certain areas; requiring contractors to report certain asbestos-related data to the Department of Transportation and Public Facilities; and providing for an effective date" and recommended it be replaced with SENATE CS FOR CS FOR HOUSE BILL NO. 258(FIN) and further recommended the adoption of the following Letter of Intent/Legislative Findings: Letter of Intent/Legislative Findings and Purpose The Legislature finds that (1) gravel or similar aggregate material is constantly in demand for major construction and maintenance of state and local transportation projects and public facilities and for all types of construction by public and private entities; (2) naturally occurring asbestos may be found in sources of gravel and similar aggregate material throughout the state; (3) while airborne asbestos fibers are a significant threat to workplace safety and public health and are subject to close regulation by federal and state authorities under U.S.C. 7401 - 7671q (Clean Air Act) and 15 U.S.C. 2601 - 2692 (Toxic Substances Control Act), use of materials containing naturally occurring asbestos in construction projects may be regulated by states; 2012-04-13 Senate Journal Page 2231 (4) in communities that do not have sources of gravel or similar aggregate material that is free of naturally occurring asbestos, costs of construction are substantially increased because of the necessity of locating alternative sources of gravel or similar aggregate material and transporting that material to distant construction and maintenance sites; and (5) a recent study suggests that, with careful use and close adherence to appropriate control strategies, state and local transportation projects and public facilities may be safely completed using sources of gravel or similar aggregate material that contains naturally occurring asbestos; the study recommends that the Department of Transportation and Public Facilities establish standards and operating procedures through a statewide process that will apply to the use of gravel and aggregate material that contains asbestos by the department and by any public or private entity. It is the purpose of this Act (1) to authorize and direct the Department of Transportation and Public Facilities to develop, implement, and, as circumstances may require or indicate, modify standards and operating procedures to allow the use in the construction and maintenance of transportation projects and public facilities in certain areas of the state of gravel or aggregate material that contains naturally occurring asbestos, with the expectation that use of that material in a manner that is consistent with those standards and procedures may avoid significant risk to human health and eliminate significantly higher costs of construction and maintenance of projects and facilities associated with using only construction material that is free of asbestos; 2012-04-13 Senate Journal Page 2232 (2) to establish that a person that uses gravel that contains naturally occurring asbestos in certain areas of the state may prepare specific project plans that conform to requirements of this Act and the department's standards and operating procedures; and (3) to shield persons and the state, including its agencies, officers, and employees, under certain conditions, from liability based on exposure to naturally occurring asbestos. (4) This Act creates a voluntary program in certain areas of the state and provides civil immunity for the use of gravel or other aggregate material that contains naturally occurring asbestos for contractors meeting the requirements of the program; nothing in this Act mandates a contractor to submit a site-specific plan or to adhere to the requirements of a plan approved by the department. (5) Because neither the state nor the federal government has established a scale assigning a specific risk level to a corresponding amount of naturally occurring asbestos, this Act accepts 0.25 percent by mass, the minimum detectable amount of asbestos under the California Air Resources Board Method 435, as the baseline for the presence of naturally occurring asbestos in gravel or other aggregate material. Health risks resulting from asbestos exposure vary according to the level, type, and duration of exposure. While exposure to very small concentrations of asbestos may pose some health risk, there is not a practical way to prevent all exposure to asbestos for residents in close proximity to deposits that contain naturally occurring asbestos. The intent of this act is to establish a sensible analytical threshold for detection of naturally occurring asbestos in gravel or other aggregate material and to establish appropriate exceptions for the use of gravel or other aggregate material that 2012-04-13 Senate Journal Page 2233 contains naturally occurring asbestos for certain public facilities and transportation projects involving unusual circumstances, including projects in remote locations or in regions where gravel or other aggregate material free from naturally occurring asbestos is not reasonably available. Signing do pass: Senators Hoffman, Stedman, Cochairs; Senators Thomas, Egan, McGuire, Ellis. The following previously published fiscal information applies: Fiscal Note No. 1, zero, Department of Labor and Workforce Development Fiscal Note No. 3, Department of Health and Social Services Fiscal Note No. 4, zero, Department of Law Fiscal Note No. 5, zero, Department of Natural Resources Fiscal Note No. 6, Department of Environmental Conservation Fiscal Note No. 7, Department of Transportation and Public Facilities The bill was referred to the Rules Committee.