Health board approves changes to air pollution rules
The Allegheny County Board of Health today backed off a plan that would have given it control of spending of pollution fines meant for clean air programs.
The board unanimously approved revisions to proposed changes in county law regarding the Clean Air Fund — $8 million designated for projects that help clean the county’s air and educate people about air pollution — following strong opposition voiced during a public comment period.
The revisions reinstated a requirement that the board consult with the county’s Air Pollution Advisory Committee, composed of residents with an interest in clean air, before spending money from the fund. The board sought to eliminate that consultation.
The board kept changes that will allow it to set fees for issuing various permits based on “the degree of technical and regulatory difficulty in establishing fees.”
Immediately after approving the action, the board voted to adopt the fee structure it was using, until it decides whether increases are necessary.