Lawmaker Says State's Gas Pumps May Violate New Clean Air Regulation

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(Sacramento, CA)
Thursday, April 9, 2009

A California lawmaker says the state may be violating its own regulation requiring gas stations to meet new clean air standards.
State Senator Dave Cox says he wants to know if gas pumps the state uses to fuel its vehicles are legal.

Capital Public Radio's Steve Shadley reports…

Senator Cox says he’s critical of the new regulation approved by the California Air Resources Board.  It mandates that all station owners modernize vapor recovery equipment on their gas pumps.  Station owners that did not make the upgrades by last week’s deadline could receive citations from local air quality districts. 
Cox is asking the ARB if fire stations, public schools and even state agencies using their own gas pumps face fines if they violate the regulation… 
“We have reason to believe there are a significant number of public entities that are not in compliance, including the state of California..  It’s kind of an interesting situation that we’re beating up on the private sector but we taken care of it as far as the state of California is concerned, or other public entities…”
A spokesperson with the State Department of General Services says gas pumps at their facilities are in compliance.
ARB spokesman Dmitiri Stanich says state pumps are subject to inspection and violators will be fined if they haven’t changed their gas pumps.  He says he’s not sure if any public agencies or school districts have received citations so far.  Meantime, Senator Cox is calling for more public access to information about the fines.  He’s calling on ARB to require clean air districts around California to post  their gas station inspection findings on the internet.