The EPA is seeking comments on how a policy that offers reduced penalties to companies for self-disclosing environmental violations should apply to the new owners of recently acquired facilities. The audit policy offers reduced penalties to companies that self-police their programs, promptly disclose and correct any violations discovered, and take steps to prevent future violations.
Companies with newly acquired facilities can use the audit policy to examine their performance and work with EPA to come into compliance with environmental laws. Since 1995, more than 3,000 companies have disclosed and resolved violations at over 9,000 facilities under this policy.
EPA is seeking input from the public on how best to encourage new owners to use the audit policy. EPA will accept written comments until July 13, 2007, and also invites the public to offer comment at two public meetings to be held on June 12 in Washington, D.C. and June 20 in San Francisco, Calif.
Kmart recently saved about $1.6 million by self-disclosing violations of federal environmental regulations discovered at 17 distribution centers in 13 states.