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ANNOUNCEMENT OF FOUR NEW COMPLIANCE ASSISTANCE CENTERS



Thought others might be interested in this:

  EPA today announced the availability of four new Compliance 
Assistance Centers whose purpose is to assist small businesses,  local 
governments and communities in understanding and complying with 
environmental regulations.  These new centers will focus on the paints 
and coatings industry, the transportation industry, small and medium-sized 
chemical manufacturers, and local government agencies.  Each center will 
offer web sites, telephone assistance lines, document fax-back systems, 
and e-mail discussion groups.
"We are fundamentally changing the way this country protects public health 
and the environment by making environmental regulations work better and cost 
less," Vice President Al Gore said.  "These new compliance centers provide 
small businesses, local governments and others with unprecedented
access to basic information, ensuring easier and cheaper compliance with 
our nation's environmental laws."

   The Compliance Assistance Centers are part of the Clinton Administration's sweeping efforts to reinvent 
government to make it work better and cost less.  In March 1995, President Clinton, Vice President Gore and EPA 
Administrator Carol M. Browner put forth an ambitious agenda to reinvent environmental protection as part of that 
larger reinvention effort.  Under EPA's reinvention efforts, the agency has cut more than 22 million hours of 
unnecessary paperwork burden while at the same time strengthening protection of public health and the environment.  
The Compliance Assistance Centers are designed to make regulatory and pollution prevention information available to 
small businesses so they can achieve compliance with environmental laws as easily and cost-effectively as possible.  
 Other assistance centers opened by EPA received more than 75,000 visits over the Internet during the first six 
months of 1998. 

   The four new centers bring a total of nine to the Internet.  Other centers cover the metal finishing, 
automotive service and repair, printing, printed wiring boards and agriculture industries. All of the centers are 
operated in partnership with industry, academic institutions, environmental groups, and other federal and state 
agencies. 


   "We need the combined efforts of all levels of government, businesses, and the public to successfully address 
the environmental problems we all face today," said Steven A. Herman, EPA Assistant Administrator for Enforcement 
and Compliance Assurance.  "We must use all the tools available to us to promote compliance for the good of the 
environment.  The centers are valuable tools for providing small businesses and local government with detailed 
information that they need in order to comply with regulations which protect the environment."

   Centers are selected to serve sectors in which there are a large number of small entities that come under 

federal environmental regulation.  The centers make information available to those who want to do the right thing, 
but need answers to their questions.   Since not all small businesses have access to the Internet, the centers also 
provide information through toll-free phone lines and fax mail.

   The nine EPA compliance assistance centers provide regularly updated compliance policies and guidelines, 
pollution prevention information, sources of additional information and expertise, summaries of regulations and 
initiatives, vendor listings and directories, environmental management software and benchmarking tools that can be 
downloaded from the Internet.  Some of the centers also contain  
"expert help" features that guide a small business to information, "virtual shops" that allow a user to click on 
any facet of an illustrated operation and see what regulations apply, and on-line access to relevant state 
regulations.

   The web addresses of the new compliance assistance centers are:  

   Chemical Industry 	    http://www.chemalliance.org
   Local Governments 	    http://www.lgean.org
   Paints & Coatings 	    http://www.paintcenter.org
   Transportation 	    http://www.transource.org

The web addresses of the existing compliance assistance centers are:

   Metal Finishing 	    http://www.nmfrc.org
   Automotive Service & Repair http://www.ccar-greenlink.org
   Printing 		    http://www.pneac.org
   Printed Wiring Boards    http://www.pwbrc.org
   Agriculture 		    http://www.epa.gov/oeca/ag 

Margaret Nover
Pollution Prevention Program, City of Portland, OR
(503) 823-7623
margaret@bes.ci.portland.or.us