Illinois General Assembly - Full Text of HB3090
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Full Text of HB3090  102nd General Assembly

HB3090 102ND GENERAL ASSEMBLY

  
  

 


 
102ND GENERAL ASSEMBLY
State of Illinois
2021 and 2022
HB3090

 

Introduced 2/19/2021, by Rep. Sonya M. Harper

 

SYNOPSIS AS INTRODUCED:
 
New Act

    Creates the Environmental Justice Act. Creates the Illinois Environmental Justice Advisory Council to provide independent advice and recommendations to the Governor, the Environmental Protection Agency, and the other State agencies about broad, cross-cutting issues related to environmental justice and on policies, practices, and specific actions. Requires the Agency to: (1) develop and implement a strategy prioritizing enforcement in neighborhoods with environmental justice populations; (2) compile an annual report detailing the number and types of enforcement actions in neighborhoods with environmental justice populations; (3) establish and maintain a supplemental environmental project bank with specified requirements; (4) publish a progress report on environmental justice no less often than every 5 years; and (5) work with the Department of Public Health to establish health risk assessment guidelines and develop an online mapping that identifies specified information. Contains requirements for environmental impact reports. Requires the Director of the Agency to appoint a Director of Environmental Justice within the Agency to perform specified duties. Provides that State agencies shall (1) designate an environmental justice coordinator for each State agency to perform specified actions and (2) develop a specific policy or strategy to promote environmental justice. Establishes the Interagency Environmental Justice Working Group to maximize State resources, research, and technical assistance to further the purposes of the Act and of environmental justice in the State. Provides that environmental justice coordinators shall serve as their State agency's representative to the Interagency Environmental Working Group. Contains other provisions.


LRB102 14040 CPF 19392 b

FISCAL NOTE ACT MAY APPLY

 

 

A BILL FOR

 

HB3090LRB102 14040 CPF 19392 b

1    AN ACT concerning safety.
 
2    Be it enacted by the People of the State of Illinois,
3represented in the General Assembly:
 
4    Section 1. Short title. This Act may be cited as the
5Environmental Justice Act.
 
6    Section 5. Purpose. This Act is intended to: (1) promote
7environmental justice, eliminate disparities with respect to
8exposure to environmental toxins, and ensure access to
9environmental benefits within the State; and (2) protect the
10people in their right to the conservation, development, and
11utilization of the agricultural, mineral, forest, water, air,
12and other natural resources.
 
13    Section 10. Definitions. In this Act:
14    "Advisory Council" means the Illinois Environmental
15Justice Advisory Council.
16    "Agency" means the Environmental Protection Agency.
17    "Environmental justice" means the right to be protected
18from environmental pollution and to live in and enjoy a clean
19and healthful environment regardless of race, income, national
20origin, or English language proficiency. "Environmental
21justice" includes the equal protection and meaningful
22involvement of all people with respect to the development,

 

 

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1implementation, and enforcement of environmental laws, rules,
2regulations, and policies and the equitable distribution of
3environmental benefits.
4    "Environmental benefits" means access to funding, open
5space, enforcement, technical assistance, training, or other
6beneficial resources disbursed by a State agency.
7    "Environmental justice population" means a neighborhood in
8which: the annual median household income is equal to or less
9than 65% of the statewide median; minorities comprise 25% or
10more of the population; or 25% or more of households lack
11English language proficiency. Where a neighborhood does not
12meet any of those criteria, but a geographic portion of that
13neighborhood meets at least one of those criteria, the Agency
14may designate that geographic portion as an environmental
15justice population upon petition of at least 10 residents of
16that geographic portion.
17    "Equal protection" means that no group of people, because
18of race, ethnicity, class, gender, or disability bears an
19unfair share of environmental pollution from industrial,
20commercial, State, or municipal operations or has limited
21access to natural resources, including waterfronts, parks and
22open space, and water resources.
23    "IEPA" means the Environmental Protection Act.
24    "Lacking English language proficiency" means households
25that, according to federal census forms, do not have an adult
26proficient in English.

 

 

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1    "Neighborhood" means a census block group as defined by
2the U.S. Census Bureau, but not including people who live in
3college dormitories or people under formally authorized
4supervised care or custody, such as federal or State prisons.
5    "Supplemental environmental project" means an
6environmentally beneficial project, the implementation of
7which primarily benefits public health, safety and welfare,
8and the environment.
9    "Toxics Release Inventory Program" means the Toxics
10Release Inventory and Toxics Release Inventory Program of the
11United States Environmental Protection Agency.
12    "TRI facility" means any industrial or commercial facility
13subject to the rules, regulations, policies, or reporting
14requirements of the Toxics Release Inventory Program or
15comparable laws or rules of the State for the management and
16control of pollutants or toxins that pose a significant risk
17to public health or the environment.
 
18    Section 15. Illinois Environmental Justice Advisory
19Council.
20    (a) The Illinois Environmental Justice Advisory Council is
21created. By no later than 180 days after the effective date of
22this Act, the Agency shall convene the Advisory Council. The
23Advisory Council shall provide independent advice and
24recommendations to the Governor, the Agency, and other State
25agencies about broad, cross-cutting issues related to

 

 

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1environmental justice and on policies, practices, and specific
2actions that the State should implement to ensure that the
3objectives of this Act are accomplished.
4    (b) The Advisory Council shall consist of at least 9, but
5not more than 15, persons, including:
6        (1) a chair designated by the Advisory Council and
7    approved by the Governor;
8        (2) no less than 2 persons appointed by the President
9    of the Senate;
10        (3) no less than 2 persons appointed by the Speaker of
11    the House of Representatives; and
12        (4) the remainder appointed by the Governor.
13    The Advisory Council shall be comprised of environmental
14justice stakeholders, including: scientific or other experts
15in environmental or public health matters holding academic
16positions in colleges, universities, or other research
17institutions and who work regularly in, or conduct substantial
18research regarding, environmental justice concerns;
19representatives of the environmental nonprofit sector;
20representatives of conservation commissions or boards of
21health; residents or elected officials of environmental
22justice population neighborhoods.
23    No fewer than 4 of the persons appointed to the Advisory
24Council shall be residents of environmental justice population
25neighborhoods within the State.
26    (c) A majority of the serving members of the Advisory

 

 

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1Council shall be deemed a quorum. The Advisory Council shall
2establish rules for conducting its activities and may amend
3the rules as it deems reasonable, subject to the Governor's
4approval and consistent with the provisions and purposes of
5this Act.
6    (d) The Advisory Council shall meet at such times and
7places as determined by the Advisory Council and its chair and
8shall submit an initial report giving advice and
9recommendations to the Governor within 6 months following the
10appointment of the Council's members. Thereafter the Advisory
11Council shall meet at least semi-annually and submit
12supplemental reports giving advice and recommendations to the
13Governor and the Agency no less often than once per year.
14    (e) The Advisory Council may hold public meetings at its
15discretion or at the request of the Governor or the Agency for
16the purpose of fact-finding, receiving public comments, or
17conducting inquiries concerning environmental justice. The
18Advisory Council shall prepare for public review and include
19in its reports a summary of the comments and recommendations
20made at the public meetings.
21    (f) The Office of the Governor and the Agency shall
22provide the Advisory Council with staffing and administrative
23support sufficient to accomplish the goals set out in
24subsection (a).
 
25    Section 20. Environmental justice population enforcement

 

 

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1strategy.
2    (a) By no later than 180 days after the effective date of
3this Act, the Agency shall develop and implement a strategy
4prioritizing enforcement in neighborhoods with environmental
5justice populations. The Agency shall compile an annual
6report, due at the end of each calendar year, detailing the
7number and types of enforcement actions in neighborhoods with
8environmental justice populations.
9    (b) The strategy shall also address the following:
10        (1) Ensuring equal compliance and enforcement for
11    facilities subject to environmental regulatory programs or
12    permitting requirements and located in or near
13    environmental justice population neighborhoods.
14        (2) Establishing a process for reviewing which IEPA
15    thresholds apply for enhanced public participation and
16    substantive review.
17        (3) Ensuring brownfield remediation in or near
18    environmental justice population neighborhoods.
19        (4) Creating an online environmental justice
20    repository of information about the State's environmental
21    justice initiatives for the general public and project
22    proponents.
 
23    Section 25. Supplemental environmental project bank. The
24Agency shall establish and maintain a supplemental
25environmental project bank. The supplemental environmental

 

 

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1project bank shall maintain an inventory of environmentally
2beneficial projects in communities with environmental justice
3populations that may be funded by violators in addition to
4paying penalties associated with the settlement of enforcement
5actions. Supplemental environmental project banks shall
6conform to any Agency policies regarding supplemental
7environmental projects. The Agency shall establish and
8maintain a website portal where the public and potential
9supplemental environmental project bank recipients may submit
10potential supplemental environmental project bank projects to
11be considered for future settlements.
 
12    Section 30. Environmental justice progress report.
13    (a) The Agency shall, in consultation with other State
14agencies, and no less often than every 5 years, publish a
15progress report on environmental justice:
16        (1) incorporating the recommendations of the Advisory
17    Council, as appropriate;
18        (2) incorporating enforcement and supplemental
19    environmental project bank activities undertaken;
20        (3) reporting metrics on reduction of pollution in
21    neighborhoods with environmental justice populations; and
22        (4) outlining further policy actions.
23    (b) The report shall be filed with the clerk of the House
24of Representatives, the clerk of the Senate, the chairs of the
25joint committee on environment, natural resources and

 

 

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1agriculture, the chair of the Senate Environment and
2Conservation Committee, the chair of the House of
3Representatives Environment Committee, the chair of the Senate
4Energy and Public Utilities Committee, and the chair of the
5House of Representatives Energy & Environment.
 
6    Section 35. Health risk assessment guidelines.
7    (a) The Agency shall work with the Department of Public
8Health to establish health risk assessment guidelines, using
9the best available science and established health risk
10assessment parameters, and shall develop an online mapping
11tool that is accessible by the public and identifies:
12        (1) environmental justice populations by census tract;
13        (2) sources of pollution according to the health risk
14    assessment guidelines in each environmental justice census
15    tract; and
16        (3) harmful effects to human health or to ecological
17    systems resulting from exposure to each pollution source.
18    (b) The Department of Public Health shall prioritize
19census tracts with the worst health risk outcomes and develop
20strategies for reducing public health threats.
 
21    Section 40. Environmental impact reports; enhanced public
22participation.
23    (a) Notwithstanding any other provision of law, if a
24person or entity submits an environmental impact report to the

 

 

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1Agency, the environmental impact report shall include an
2enhanced analysis of impacts and mitigation for any project
3located in or within one mile of an environmental justice
4population, and within 5 miles of an environmental justice
5population for a project that exceeds applicable thresholds
6for air under IEPA.
7    (b) An enhanced analysis under subsection (a) shall
8include, at a minimum:
9        (1) analysis of multiple air impacts;
10        (2) data on baseline public health conditions within
11    the affected environmental justice population;
12        (3) analysis of technological, site planning, and
13    operational alternatives to reduce or eliminate impacts;
14    and
15        (4) proposed on-site and off-site mitigation measures
16    to reduce multiple impacts, increase environmental
17    benefits, and further environmental justice and equal
18    protection for the affected environmental justice
19    population.
20    (c) In cases where the proposed project has the potential
21to impact a neighborhood with an environmental justice
22population lacking English language proficiency, the
23environmental impact report shall be in English and in any
24other language spoken by the environmental justice population.
25The environmental impact report shall describe the proposed
26facility and its location, the range of potential

 

 

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1environmental and health impacts of each pollutant, the
2application and review process, and a contact person, with
3phone number and address, from whom information will be
4available as the application proceeds.
5    (d) There shall be enhanced public participation for any
6project located in or within one mile of an environmental
7justice population or within 5 miles of an environmental
8justice population for a project that exceeds applicable
9thresholds for air under the IEPA. Enhanced public
10participation may include use of alternative media such as
11community and ethnic newspapers and other media, use of
12alternative information repositories, and translation of
13materials or interpretation services prior to and during
14public meetings where a significant portion of the relevant
15environmental justice population uses a primary language other
16than English in their home. When scheduling public meetings,
17the Agency shall recommend and may require that project
18proponents consider the time of the meeting, availability of
19public transportation, and whether the locations are
20child-friendly and culturally appropriate. To the extent
21feasible, meetings should be held in places that community
22members already routinely use and feel comfortable visiting.
23Additionally, the Agency shall recommend that project
24proponents consider whether outreach efforts should include an
25educational component to ensure that community members have
26the information necessary to evaluate a project's potential

 

 

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1impacts.
 
2    Section 45. TRI facilities.
3    (a) By no later than 30 days after the effective date of
4this Act, the Agency shall direct each department, board, or
5other State agency or program with jurisdiction over the
6permitting of any TRI facility to issue recommendations for
7ways to substantially decrease the further siting or expansion
8of TRI facilities within environmental justice population
9neighborhoods.
10    (b) By no later than 180 days after the effective date of
11this Act, the Agency shall initiate a rulemaking process that
12shall establish a cap on the total number of TRI facilities
13that may be sited or expanded within any environmental justice
14population neighborhood. The rulemaking process shall
15prioritize and give substantial weight to:
16        (1) achieving a substantial reduction in the risk of
17    the exposure of residents of the neighborhood to toxins
18    listed in the Toxics Release Inventory Program; and
19        (2) providing and preserving the access of the
20    residents of the neighborhood to a clean and healthful
21    environment regardless of race, income, national origin,
22    or English language proficiency.
 
23    Section 50. Director of Environmental Justice. By no later
24than 30 days after the effective date of this Act, the Director

 

 

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1of the Agency shall appoint a Director of Environmental
2Justice within the Agency. The Director of Environmental
3Justice shall have such duties and authority as the Director
4of the Agency deems reasonable to ensure that the purposes of
5this Act are carried out. The Director of Environmental
6Justice shall liaise with the Advisory Council and other State
7agencies and may have any other duties that the Director of the
8Agency deems necessary to secure environmental justice. The
9Director of the Agency shall not permit the position of
10Director of Environmental Justice to be vacant for more than
1160 days.
 
12    Section 55. Environmental justice coordinators; policies
13or strategies.
14    (a) By no later than 30 days after the effective date of
15this Act, all State agencies, other than the Environmental
16Protection Agency, shall designate an environmental justice
17coordinator for each State agency. The environmental justice
18coordinator shall be the main point of contact regarding
19environmental justice matters within that State agency, shall
20liaise with the Director of Environmental Justice within the
21Environmental Protection Agency, and shall be responsible for
22developing and implementing the environmental justice policy
23or strategy of that State agency, as created pursuant to this
24Act or any other law, rule, regulation, or order.
25    (b) By no later than 180 days after the effective date of

 

 

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1this Act, and except where already provided for elsewhere in
2this Act, each State agency shall develop a specific policy or
3strategy to promote environmental justice in ways that are
4tailored to the specific authority, mission, and programs
5under its jurisdiction. The policies or strategies shall be
6reviewed every 5 years and updated as needed. Policies or
7strategies shall include, but are not limited to:
8        (1) identification of permitting or other applicable
9    regulatory authority over development projects, brownfield
10    remediation, industrial operations, and commercial
11    facilities that may impact environmental justice
12    populations and a description of any mechanism to ensure
13    that environmental justice populations are protected in
14    the review process;
15        (2) identification of economic development
16    opportunities, environmental benefits, and other
17    discretionary funding programs that consider, or
18    appropriately should consider, the needs of an
19    environmental justice population in the award process; and
20        (3) an enhanced public participation plan for
21    environmental justice populations potentially affected by
22    development projects, brownfield remediation, industrial
23    operations, and commercial facilities that focuses the
24    State agency's resources on outreach activities that
25    enhance public participation opportunities in
26    environmental justice populations, including a plan for

 

 

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1    communicating in multiple languages and scheduling public
2    meetings at locations and times convenient for
3    neighborhood stakeholders.
 
4    Section 60. Interagency Environmental Justice Working
5Group.
6    (a) The Interagency Environmental Justice Working Group is
7established to maximize State resources, research, and
8technical assistance to further the purposes of this Act and
9of environmental justice in the State.
10    (b) An environmental justice coordinator designated under
11subsection (a) of Section 55 shall serves as his or her State
12agency's representative to the Interagency Environmental
13Working Group. The Director of Environmental Justice shall
14convene meetings of the Interagency Environmental Justice
15Working Group and serve as it chair. By no later than 90 days
16after the effective date of this Act, the Interagency
17Environmental Justice Working Group shall hold at least one
18meeting and develop a schedule for subsequent meetings, which
19shall take place no less than once a year.