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 FINANCIAL ASSURANCE FUND COVERAGE

 

All owners of petroleum underground storage tanks are subject to financial responsibility rules and are required to be a part of the Financial Assurance Fund. You may click on one of the following links to view all of the requirements for obtaining a Certificate of Coverage.

Click here to view the 2016 Addendum to the Certificate of Coverage

Click here for a listing of unclaimed monies...
Payment of Annual Tank Fees and Annual Fee Assessment Statement
Demonstrating Financial Responsibility
Certifying Compliance
Installing USTs
Removing USTs

Replacing USTs
Transferring Ownership of USTs


Payment of Annual Tank Fees

Fees are assessed annually and are required for all petroleum USTs in the ground at any time between July 1st and June 30th. Fee statement notices are mailed to owners or operators by May 1st of each year and payment is due by July 1st. The 2015 program year annual per tank fee is $400 for the $55,000 deductible and $600 for the $11,000 deductible.

 

Owners with outstanding fees are not in compliance with the law. The law states that failure to pay any annual fee or penalty fee assessed will result in the non-issuance or revocation of a Certificate of Coverage. Thus any owner with outstanding fees or penalties, even if the current program yearís fees have been paid, will not be issued a current year Certificate of Coverage.

If fees are not remitted by July 1st, a notification is issued advising the owner or operator of the non-compliance and the assessment of a penalty if fees are not paid within 30 days. If fees remain unpaid at the end of the 30 days, an Order Pursuant to Law is issued requiring fee payment and assessing a penalty of $100/tank per month up to a maximum of $1000/tank.

Failure to comply with the Order Pursuant to Law will result in the Board notifying the State Fire Marshal of the nonpayment and requesting the State Attorney Generalís office to pursue collection of all assessed fees and penalties.

Fund coverage does not begin until a fully completed Annual Fee Assessment Statement, a Statement of Financial Responsibility, a Certification of Compliance, and payment is accepted by the Board.

Application for Certificate of Coverage/Annual Fee Assessment Statement

The Application/Fee Statement includes a fee calculation section indicating the total number of petroleum USTs and the total amount due. Owners of six or fewer USTs can also select which deductible they choose for that program year. A pre-printed listing of existing facilities with the number of tanks for each facility recorded the previous year is included. Owners or operators must demonstrate financial responsibility and certify compliance. 

Demonstrating Financial Responsibility

Financial responsibility is a demonstration by owners or operators that they have the financial capability to pay for damages caused by accidental releases from petroleum USTs. Financial responsibility has two components: 

  • Deductible Coverage
    An owner must demonstrate he/she is financially able to pay for the deductible amount selected when remitting annual fees to the Fund. For most owners one of six financial responsibility mechanisms approved by the Fire Marshal must be selected. However if the owner is a political subdivision, there are four additional financial responsibility mechanisms approved by the Fire Marshal from which to choose. Details concerning each of these mechanisms can be found in the Financial Responsibility Guide published by BUSTR.

  • Participation in the Financial Assurance Fund
    Coverage above the deductible amount up to $1 million per occurrence is obtained from the Financial Assurance Fund by paying the required fees. Participation in the Fund is mandatory for all petroleum UST owners and operators.

Certification of Compliance

Before issuing a Certificate of Coverage, the Board also requires tank owners or operators to certify that their petroleum USTs are assurable. To be assurable, USTs must be in compliance with State Fire Marshal rules including tank performance standards, leak detection and registration. 

Certificate of Coverage

 

A Certificate of Coverage is issued when the Board receives all of the following:

  • A completed Annual Fee Assessment Statement*, including an executed Financial Responsibility Affidavit, and a certification that the USTs are assurable

  • Payment of fees and penalties due

  • Any other documentation that may be required

*Errors and/or omissions in the fee statement, in most instances, can delay the issuance of a Certificate of Coverage. 

Fees submitted for statutorily exempt tanks or tanks which contain an exempt product will be returned or refunded. However, fees for tanks which do not meet compliance requirements, including the completion of the Financial Responsibility Affidavit, are not returned and no Certificate of Coverage will be issued until the non-compliance is corrected. Coverage begins on the effective date stated on the Certificate and ends on the following June 30th.

When the Board has not issued a valid Certificate of Coverage to an owner or operator for a given UST for two or more consecutive years, additional requirements for obtaining coverage are imposed. Before coverage can begin the owner or operator must submit the following:

  • All outstanding fees and penalties

  • A certification that no release has been suspected or confirmed from the petroleum UST, or any known release is in compliance with State Fire Marshal rules

  • A certification that leak detection requirements for the UST have been and continue to be complied with

  • Leak detection records to evidence compliance

Installing an Underground Storage Tank

When installing petroleum underground storage tanks at a new or existing facility, owners must notify the Board in writing within 30 days. The owner should notify the Board by mailing or faxing a copy of the Tank Installation Notification Form, or by submitting a copy of the installation report.

 

Transferring Ownership of an Underground Storage Tank

Within 30 days of the transfer, submit the following information in writing:

  • The name, address and telephone number of the previous and new owners

  • The address of the facility sold

  • The number of USTs sold

  • The date ownership transferred

The new owner will be required to demonstrate financial responsibility and certify the tanks are assurable before a new Certificate of Coverage will be issued. When coverage under the previous owner is at the standard deductible, the new owner may elect to pay the fees and acquire the reduced deductible, if he/she is the owner of six or less USTs. The owner should notify the Board by mailing or faxing a copy of the Transfer of Ownership Form.

Removing an Underground Storage Tank

When removing a petroleum UST, the owner or operator is required to notify the Board in writing. The owner should mail or fax us a copy of the Tank Removal Notification Form. As an alternative, the owner may submit a copy of the narrative portion of the closure report, or a copy of the removal permit, signed and dated by the fire inspector.

 

Replacing an Underground Storage Tank

 

In situations where a replacement of USTs occurs, coverage will transfer to the new USTs provided the removals took place immediately prior to the installations and ownership of both the removed and the installed tanks is the same. The owner should fax or mail a copy of the Tank Replacement Notification Form. In addition, the owner may forward a copy of the closure report and/or installation report to this office for documentation.

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