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9VAC25-31-485. Requirements for a person who land applies biosolids.

A. No person shall land apply biosolids pursuant to a permit issued in accordance with this regulation unless an individual holding a valid certificate of competence as specified in the Virginia Pollution Abatement Permit Regulation, Article 5, Certification of Land Applicators, as set forth in 9VAC25-32-690 through 9VAC25-32-760, is onsite at all times during such land application.

B. When an application for a permit that authorizes the land application of biosolids is submitted to the department:

1. Permit holders shall use a DEQ control number, if previously assigned, identifying each land application field. If a DEQ control number has not been assigned, provide the site identification code used by the permit applicant to report activities and the site's location.

2. A written agreement shall be established between the landowner and permit applicant or permit holder to be submitted with the permit application, whereby the landowner shall consent to the application of biosolids on his property. The landowner agreement shall include:

a. A statement certifying that the landowner is the sole owner or one of multiple owners of the property or properties identified on the landowner agreements;

b. A statement certifying that no concurrent agreements are in effect for the fields to be permitted for biosolids application;

c. An acknowledgement that the landowner shall notify the permittee when land is sold or ownership transferred;

d. An acknowledgement that the landowner shall notify the permittee if any conditions change such that any component of the landowner agreement becomes invalid;

e. Permission to allow department staff on the landowner's property to conduct inspections;

f. An acknowledgement by the landowner of any site restrictions identified in the regulation;

g. An acknowledgement that the landowner has received a biosolids fact sheet approved by the department; and

h. An acknowledgement that the landowner shall not remove notification signs placed by the permit holder.

3. New landowner agreements, using the most current form provided by the board, shall be submitted to the department for proposed land application sites identified in each application for issuance or reissuance of a permit or the modification to add land to an existing permit that authorizes the land application of biosolids.

4. For permits modified in order to incorporate changes to this chapter, the permit holder shall, within 60 days of the effective date of the permit modification, advise the landowner by certified letter of the requirement to provide a new landowner agreement. The letter shall include instructions to the landowner for signing and returning the new landowner agreement and shall advise the landowner that the permit holder's receipt of such new landowner agreement is required prior to application of biosolids to the landowner's property.

5. The responsibility for obtaining and maintaining the agreements lies with the permit holder.

C. The permit holder shall ensure that the landowner agreement is still valid at the time of land application.

D. Notification requirements.

1. At least 100 days prior to commencing the first land application of biosolids at a permitted site the permittee shall deliver or cause to be delivered written notification to the chief executive officer or his designee for the local government where the site is located. The notice shall identify the location of the permitted site and the expected sources of the biosolids to be applied to the site. This requirement may be satisfied by the department's notice to the local government at the time of receiving the permit application if all necessary information is included in the notice or by providing a list of all available permitted sites in the locality at least 100 days prior to commencing the application at any site on the list. If the site is located in more than one county, the notice shall be provided to all jurisdictions where the site is located.

2. At least 14 days prior to commencing land application of biosolids at a permitted site, the permit holder shall deliver or cause to be delivered written notification to the department and the chief executive officer or designee for the local government where the site is located unless they request in writing not to receive the notice. The notice shall identify the location of the permitted site and the expected sources of the sewage sludge to be applied to the site.

3. Not more than 24 hours prior to commencing land application activities, including delivery of biosolids at a permitted site, the permittee shall notify in writing the department and the chief executive officer or designee for the local government where the site is located unless they request in writing not to receive the notice. This notification shall include identification of the biosolids source and shall include only sites where land application activities will commence within 24 hours or where the biosolids will be staged within 24 hours.

E. Evidence of financial responsibility shall be provided in accordance with requirements specified in Article 6 (9VAC25-32-770 et seq.) of Part IX (9VAC25-32-303 et seq.) of the Virginia Pollution Abatement (VPA) Permit Regulation.

F. Posting signs.

1. At least five business days prior to delivery of biosolids for land application on any site permitted under this regulation, the permit holder shall post signs at the site that comply with this section, are visible and legible from the public right-of-way in both directions of travel, and conform to the specifications in this subsection. The sign shall remain in place for at least five business days after land application has been completed at the site. The permit holder shall not remove the signs until at least 30 days after land application has been completed at the site.

a. A sign shall be posted at or near the intersection of the public right-of-way and the main site access road or driveway to the site used by the biosolids transport vehicles.

b. If the field is located adjacent to a public right-of-way, at least one sign shall be posted along each public road frontage beside the field to be land applied.

c. The department may grant a waiver to the requirements in this section, or require alternative posting options due to extenuating circumstances or where requirements conflict with local government ordinances and other requirements regulating the use of signs.

2. Upon the posting of signs at a land application site prior to commencing land application, the permittee shall deliver or cause to be delivered written notification to the department and the chief executive officer or designee for the local government where the site is located unless they request in writing not to receive the notice. Notification shall be delivered to the department within 24 hours of the posting of the signs. The notice shall include the following:

a. The name and telephone number of the permit holder, including the name of a representative knowledgeable of the permit;

b. Identification by tax map number and the DEQ control number for sites on which land application is to take place;

c. The name or title and telephone number of at least one individual designated by the permit holder to respond to questions and complaints related to the land application project if not the permit holder identified in subdivision a of this subdivision; and

d. The approximate dates on which land application is to begin and end at the site.

3. The sign shall be made of weather-resistant materials and shall be sturdily mounted so as to be capable of remaining in place and legible throughout the period that the sign is required at the site. Signs required by this section shall be temporary, nonilluminated, and four square feet or more in area, and only contain the following information:

a. A statement that biosolids are being land applied at the site;

b. The name of the permit holder;

c. The telephone number of an individual designated by the permit holder to respond to complaints and inquiries; and

d. Contact information for the department, including a telephone number for complaints and inquiries.

4. The permit holder shall make a good faith effort to replace or repair any sign that has been removed from a land application site or that has been damaged so as to render any of its required information illegible prior to five business days after completion of land application.

G. Biosolids management plan.

1. The permit holder shall maintain and implement a biosolids management plan, which shall consist of three components:

a. The materials, including site booklets, developed and submitted at the time of permit application or permit modification adding a site to the permit in accordance with 9VAC25-31-100 Q;

b. Nutrient management plan for each site, in accordance with 9VAC25-31-505; and

c. Operation and maintenance (O&M) manual, developed and submitted to the department within 90 days of the effective date of the permit.

2. The biosolids management plan and all of its components shall be incorporated as an enforceable part of the permit.

3. The O&M manual shall include at a minimum:

a. Equipment maintenance and calibration procedures and schedules;

b. Storage facility maintenance procedures and schedules;

c. Sampling schedules for:

(1) Required monitoring; and

(2) Operational control testing;

d. Sample collection, preservation and analysis procedures, including laboratories and methods used; and

e. Instructions for recording and reporting all monitoring activities.

4. Current VPDES permit holders who land apply biosolids may use their existing VPDES O&M plan addressing land application to satisfy the requirements of this section if the existing plan addresses all of the required minimum components identified in this section.

H. Handling of complaints.

1. Within 24 hours of receiving notification of a complaint, the permit holder shall commence investigation of the complaint and shall determine whether the complaint is substantive. The permit holder shall confirm receipt of all substantive complaints by phone, email, or facsimile to the department, the chief executive officer or designee for the local government of the jurisdiction in which the complaint originates, and the owner of the treatment facility from which the biosolids originated within 24 hours after receiving the complaint.

2. For the purposes of this section, a substantive complaint shall be deemed to be any complaint alleging a violation of these regulations, state law, or local ordinance; a release of biosolids to state waters or to a public right-of-way or to any location not authorized in the permit; or failure to comply with the nutrient management plan for the land application site.

Statutory Authority

62.1-44.15 of the Code of Virginia.

Historical Notes

Derived from Virginia Register Volume 24, Issue 6, eff. January 1, 2008; amended, Virginia Register Volume 29, Issue 24, eff. September 1, 2013.


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