Amendment for selenium water quality standards filed with LRC

Division of Water files Statement of Consideration responding to public comments received regarding  proposed amendments to water quality criteria for selenium

On April 3, 2013, the Division of Water (DOW) filed with the Legislative Research Commission (LRC) a Letter of Agency Amendment and an Agency Amendment proposing to modify the water quality criteria for selenium. The filing includes the division’s technical document outlining the process it used in developing the proposed water quality criteria for selenium and a Statement of Consideration (SOC) summarizing comments received by the division and the agency’s response. These documents are available at http://water.ky.gov/waterquality/Pages/WaterQualityStandards.aspx

The regulation, 401 KAR 10:031 Amended after Comment, including the Agency Amendment proposing to modify the water quality criteria for selenium, will be heard by the Administrative Regulations Review Subcommittee (ARRS) on Tuesday, April 9, at 1 p.m. EDT in Room 149 of the Capitol Annex.

On Feb. 5, 2013, in response to comments received during its triennial review of Kentucky’s water quality standards, DOW made notice of the agency’s proposal to update Kentucky’s water quality criteria for selenium to reflect the latest available science. The division requested and received public comment on the proposed amendments to the proposed water quality criteria for selenium.

The division presented the amendment to the ARRS on Feb. 11. At that public meeting, several environmental groups were heard regarding the proposed amendment. In response to their comments, the division voluntarily elected to defer consideration of 401 KAR 10:031 Amended after Comment by the ARRS subcommittee until their next-scheduled meeting in order to provide additional time for interested parties to evaluate the proposed agency amendment and provide the Energy and Environment Cabinet (EEC) with their written comments.

DOW issued a press release Feb. 12 describing the proposed changes to the selenium criteria, the division’s rationale for the proposal and the scientific analyses supporting the proposed new criteria. The press release included an invitation for those interested to submit comments on the proposed criteria to DOW through March 1 and instructions on how to do so. On  Feb. 14 the division also notified  a number of interested stakeholder groups that it would hold two additional public meetings at which they could again be heard and ask questions regarding the proposed amendments.

The stakeholder meetings were held Feb. 22 and Feb. 26 at the Department of Environmental Protection office in Frankfort beginning at 10 a.m. and 1 p.m., respectively. Both meetings were attended by EEC personnel who could respond to questions. Those in attendance and participating by phone included several representatives of multiple environmental organizations that had provided comment at the Feb. 11 ARRS meeting; federal stakeholders including U.S Fish and Wildlife Service and EPA Region 4; representatives of business and commercial stakeholders; and the media. All persons who wished to speak, present information, or ask questions at these meetings had the opportunity to do so.

In order to more fully consider the comments made at the Feb. 22 and 26 stakeholder meetings as well as written comments submitted by stakeholders and other members of the public on the proposed selenium amendment, on March 8 DOW deferred the March ARRS hearing on the proposed selenium criteria  to the April 9 meeting.

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