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House of Representatives
Session of 2015 - 2016 Regular Session


Posted: February 27, 2015 02:20 PM
From: Representative Robert W. Godshall
To: All House members
Subject: Transfer of pipeline safety inspection from PUC to DEP.
In the near future I will be introducing legislation to transfer pipeline safety inspection authority from the Public Utility Commission (PUC) to the Department of Environmental Protection (DEP.) Currently, intrastate pipeline inspections are conducted by the PUC pursuant to authority delegated by the US Department of Transportation Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA.) Based upon the number of district offices maintained across the Commonwealth by DEP (24), I believe this agency is better suited to the task of inspecting these pipelines and insuring the integrity for pipeline infrastructure throughout Pennsylvania.

Under this bill, DEP will develop a pipeline safety program and apply for the necessary certification and grants from PHMSA related to safety inspections of intrastate pipelines. Additionally, DEP will make application to become an intrastate agent; if granted DEP will have delegated federal inspection authority over interstate pipelines in the Commonwealth. Currently, eight states have been designated by PHMSA as interstate agents: Arizona, Connecticut, Iowa, Michigan, Minnesota, New York, Ohio and Washington.

Introduced as HB855