Completed Actions: Enhancing Federal Operational Coordination
Launched Regional Pilot
- The Working Group coordinated a pilot in New York-New Jersey where a multi-agency Federal, State, and local government team was created to coordinate chemical facility preparedness planning and response activities. Highlights of the pilot include:
- Development of a standard operating procedure (SOP) — The SOP presents a unified Federal, State, tribal, and local approach for identifying, communicating, and responding to risks at chemical facilities and (2) a plan to improve operational coordination among the Federal, State, tribal, and local agencies and first responders and will assist agencies with implementation.
- Assessment of Information Collection and Sharing — The pilot’s assessment of information collection and sharing will help ensure that the capabilities, limitations, and needs of the first responder community are understood at the Federal level. The pilot identified ways to ensure that State Homeland Security Advisors, SERCs, LEPCs, State regulators, and first responders have ready access to key information in a useful format to identify and respond to risks in chemical facilities.
- Improved Coordination — Perhaps the greatest benefit from the pilot was the discussion of safety and security issues among all levels of government, the first responder community, and stakeholders. This interaction among the pilot participants resulted in better (1) working relationships, (2) understanding of agency programs, (3) coordination of work in the field, and (4) sharing of critical information and data.
- Increased EPCRA Compliance — Early on, the pilot agencies identified the need for Federal, State, and local partners to work together to increase industry’s compliance with EPCRA requirements.
- Engaged Chemical Safety Board (CSB) to Improve Coordination — The Working Group engaged the Chemical Safety Board (CSB) to identify possible updates to existing memoranda of understanding between CSB and EPA, CSB and the OSHA, and CSB and ATF and continue the discussion on improving information sharing and collaboration.
Established Regional Working Groups in all ten Federal Regions
Regulatory Frequent or Critical Violations
- In October 2016, the Working Group published the Regulatory Frequent or Critical Violations resource describing the key items each program found to be its most frequent or, in some cases, most critical violations. While there is an expectation that facilities comply with all regulations, this information highlights areas of chemical security and safety that the regulated community should specifically consider for greater compliance.