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Re: E-M:/ Lax Environmental Enforcement - Show us the data -reply



James
 
The problem with that FOIA request is the same one other of us who regularly FOIA the MDEQ run into.  You have asked them for compilations that may not exist - at least that is the excuse we get from the department when they tell us they cannot respond to a request of this nature.  We often need to FOIA categories of exsiting docs and do the compilation ourselves.
 
If you get a response in writting why not share that with us FYI?


>>> James Clift <jamesmec@voyager.net> 09/20/00 04:03PM >>>
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Enviro-Mich message from James Clift < jamesmec@voyager.net >
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I appreciate the efforts of Thomas Rhorer to provide information
regarding the Surface Water Quality Division's efforts to enforce our
environmental laws. However, the information he provided to
environ-mich is not the information we requested. Below is the FOIA as
it was presented to the MDEQ:


August 17, 2000

Russell Harding, Director
Department of Environmental Quality
Hollister Building Sixth Floor
P.O. Box 30473
106 W. Allegan St.
Lansing, MI 48909-7973

Re: Freedom of Information Act Request ECOS Activities

Dear Mr. Harding:

In the Environmental Council of the States (ECOS) report, Fraudulent
Case: How the Environmental Working Group Misled the Public about
Environmental Enforcement, you criticize the Environmental Working Group
for using state-generated public data in the preparation of their
report. In order to provide a balanced picture of the enforcement
efforts taken by your department, I request the following information
pursuant to the Freedom of Information Act, 442 PA 1976:

Clean Air Act Enforcement

1. What is the total number of major sources of air emissions in
Michigan?

2. How many sources are considered high priority violators? If the MDEQ
uses a designation other than high priority violators please explain
the term and disclose the number of sources that fall into that
category.

3. How many inspections, and of what types, were conducted on major
sources of air emissions in the last three years for which data is
available for the entire year? In how many of those cases were
independent stack tests conducted by the department?

4. How many inspections, and of what types, were conducted on high
priority violators in the last three years for which data is available
for the entire year? In how many of those cases were independent stack
tests conducted by the department?

5. Under your agreement with the Environmental Protection Agency to
implement the Clean Air Act how many and what types of inspections are
you required to conduct annually of air emission sources in Michigan?

Clean Water Act Enforcement

6. What is the total number of NPDES permit holders in Michigan?
7. How many permit holders are considered significant violators? If the
MDEQ uses a designation other than significant violators please
explain the term and disclose the number of sources that fall into that
category.

8. How many compliance inspections were conducted on NPDES permit
holders in the last three years for which data is available for the
entire year? In how many of those cases were independent tests
conducted on the effluent discharge by the department?

9. How many compliance inspections were conducted on significant
violators in the last three years for which data is available for the
entire year? In how many of those cases were independent tests
conducted on the effluent discharge by the department?

10. Under your agreement with the Environmental Protection Agency to
implement the Clean Water Act how many and what types of inspections are
you required to conduct annually of NPDES permit holder in Michigan?

If you have any questions regarding this request, you may contact me at
487-9539. I would request a waiver of any fees pursuant to MCLA 15.234
in that the information requested can be considered as primarily
benefiting the general public. If you do not agree and the cost of
responding to this request exceeds $25, please contact me and I will
make arrangements to view materials before copying.

Sincerely,



James Clift, Policy Director
Michigan Environmental Council
119 Pere Marquette, Ste. 2A
Lansing, MI 48912
(517) 487-9539



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