ASTSWMO Newsletter Fall 2019

Annual Meeting Recap

ASTSWMO held its 2019 Annual Meeting October 30-31, the theme of which was “States Leading the Way”. It was also the 45th Anniversary of the Association, and we thank ECOS for their congratulatory letter on our anniversary. ASTSWMO hosted 322 attendees, including members from 49 States and Territories for one of its largest ever turnouts. During this meeting ASTSWMO raised over $1800 and presented it to “City Blossoms”, the selected charity for “ASTSWMO Gives Back”. Learn more about this year’s ASTSWMO Annual Meeting here.

We thank you again for your support and participation in this Annual Meeting and celebrating ASTSWMO's 45th Anniversary. We look forward to seeing you all again at the Mid-Year Meeting and next year's Annual Meeting as well.

Lifetime Achievement Award

The ASTSWMO Board of Directors selected Jeff Deckler, who retired from the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment in 2009, as the recipient of the 2019 Lifetime Achievement Award. Jeff was a member of ASTSWMO’s Federal Facilities Subcommittee for a number of years, and from 2000-2004 was the ASTSWMO Secretary-Treasurer. The Board presented him with this award during the 2019 Annual Meeting reception on October 30, 2019.

President's Letter

ASTSWMO President, Conchita Taitano (GU), outlines her vision to the Association membership for 2020.

Board of Directors

ASTSWMO Strategic Plan

ASTSWMO recently released its 2020-2024 Strategic Plan. Click here to learn more.

ASTSWMO Elections

The election for the new Vice-President took place during the 2019 ASTSWMO Annual Meeting in Washington, DC.

We congratulate Brent Everett (UT) on being elected Vice-President. We wish him the best of luck.


CERCLA & Brownfields

The CERCLA and Brownfields Subcommittee planned several sessions during the 2019 Annual Meeting, and presentations as well as recordings from those sessions can be found on our website. These sessions included Superfund Work Sharing, a Brownfields session focusing on small community assistance and development, and a joint session with the Federal Facilities Subcommittee that discussed PFAS and risk communication.

The Site Assessment Focus Group has recently published a follow up report from their 2017 publication, On Time and Under Budget, Superfund Site Assessment Program Analysis, States’ Perspective. The report includes a discussion of the variations identified for these tasks including: Pre-CERCLA Screening with sampling, Preliminary Assessment with sampling, combined Preliminary Assessment and Site Inspection, and Abbreviated Preliminary Assessment. The CERCLA and Brownfields Subcommittee has published a position paper on CERCLA Modernization. This position paper focuses on specific areas of the Superfund Program where States could contribute in a larger, more significant role which would make the process more efficient. Various publications are expected to be published in the near future, including a checklist regarding preparing CERCLA Post-Construction cleanup sites for natural disasters, as well as a publication from the Removals Focus Group on Uniformity of Time Critical Removal Actions.

The Subcommittee plans to hold their next symposium during the summer of 2020. A formal announcement, as well as registration and additional information, will be shared in early 2020.

With some positions currently open, the CERCLA and Brownfields Subcommittee encourages State members to apply to be a part of one of the Focus Groups. If you have any interest and would like to see if your Region has any openings, please contact Scott Lauher.

Federal Facilities

The Subcommittee continues to have vacancies in Regions 1, 4 and 10. If you’re interested in participating on a Federal Facilities Focus Group, please contact Charles Reyes, ASTSWMO Staff.

The Subcommittee is in the process of finalizing two resources for ASTSWMO members: 1) ASTSWMO Position Paper on Cleanups at Federal Facilities, and 2) an Issues Paper on Cleanups at Federal Facilities. The Position Paper will provide updated formal ASTSWMO policy positions on several program areas specific to federal facility cleanups and the Issues Paper will expand on the formal positions by providing examples of challenges and successes, references, and case studies.

The Federal Facilities Subcommittee and Focus Groups organized three sessions at the ASTSWMO Annual Meeting. One session provided members and guests with a brief training and discussion on the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ (USACE’s) Risk Management Method (RMM) for the Military Munitions Response Program led by Dr. Kari Meier, USACE. DoD, EPA, and States will continue to discuss the development of the RMM tool and implementation at the Munitions Response Dialogue (MRD) and other forums.

The following two sessions introduced topics that are the focus of ASTSWMO’s current research. The Remediation & Reuse Focus Group organized a session with Bill Lodder, U.S. Department of Interior, and Kim Harriz, U.S. Department of Agriculture. Mr. Lodder and Ms. Harriz provided a summary of their Department’s respective environmental management and cleanup programs and discussed opportunities for State and Federal coordination. The State Federal Coordination Focus Group led a roundtable discussion on implementing and managing land use controls at federal facilities.

Hazardous Waste

The Hazardous Waste Subcommittee planned sessions at the ASTSWMO Annual Meeting, including one on State adoption of recent RCRA hazardous waste regulations, and another that covered North Carolina projects on Streamlining the NC Hazardous Waste Billing using RCRAInfo and the Exchange Network, and a Well Permit Decision Tool. Additional sessions addressed enforcement topics and a number of hazardous waste program issues. Presentations and recordings of sessions are available on the ASTSWMO website.

The Subcommittee is preparing an update to the 2007 RCRA Subtitle C Core Report, and has been analyzing cost information in the five core program areas addressed in the 2007 report: 1) Inspections, 2) Enforcement, 3) Permitting, 4) Remediation and 5) Program Development.

The Corrective Action and Permitting Task Force is planning the ASTSWMO 2020 RCRA Corrective Action Conference that will be held on June 3-5, 2020 in Lexington, KY. The Task Force has provided input to EPA regarding RCRA corrective action beyond 2020 issues and continues to do so through an ongoing dialogue. The Compliance Monitoring and Enforcement Task Force is working on revisions to the RCRA Compliance Monitoring Strategy.

The Program Information Management (PIM) Task Force continues to monitor the development of RCRAInfo Version 6 as well as issues pertaining to implementation of the e-Manifest system. The Task Force Chair and Vice-Chair made a presentation about ASTSWMO and the activities of the PIM Task Force at the EPA National RCRAInfo User Conference held on August 26-30, 2019 in Chicago, IL.

Materials Management

The Materials Management Subcommittee organized materials management sessions at the ASTSWMO Annual Meeting. One session addressed recycling markets, and featured a national recycling markets overview by the Solid Waste Association of North America (SWANA) and findings of a survey conducted by the Sustainable Materials Management Task Force on State and Territorial (State) actions to address domestic recycling markets, and more. State actions in the areas of market development, public education and outreach and program changes were highlighted during the session. The matrix of survey findings will be posted on the ASTSWMO website. State and local single-use bag programs in DC, MD and CA were presented in another materials management session. Additional sessions addressed a number of solid waste and materials management program issues. The Subcommittee Chair highlighted State materials management activities during the “States Leading the Way” plenary session. Presentations and recordings of sessions are available on the ASTSWMO website.

The Beneficial Use Task Force recently launched a survey to obtain input on the beneficial uses of various fill materials. The Solid Waste Disposal and Conversion (SWDC) Task Force is wrapping up an odor control management compendium. The SWDC Task Force is also reviewing, for the purpose of preparing comments to EPA, the proposed EPA rule addressing the deadline for initiating closure of all unlined surface impoundments containing coal ash and for impoundments located in close proximity to aquifers. The Radiation Task Force is considering ideas for new projects, including issues related to disaster debris.


ASTSWMO thanks Dorothy Malaier (AL), LUST Task Force, and David Chambers (NE), State Fund-FR Task Force, for their leadership as Task Force Chairs over the past 3 years. Chip Crockett (AL), ASTSWMO Past-President, presented each with certificates of appreciation at the LUST Workshop in New Orleans, LA.

On October 12, ASTSWMO hosted a webinar with OUST and ORD to present EPA’s new GIS database for UST facilities and LUST sites. ASTSWMO, through the Emerging Fuels Task Force, is assisting EPA with identifying representatives from all States to review their data before the database is made publicly available.

Tara Rosie (AZ), Emerging Fuels Task Force Chair, and Therron Blatter (UT), State Fund-FR Task Force, participated in a panel on aging UST systems at the Petroleum Equipment Institute (PEI) convention in Atlanta, GA, on October 2, 2019. Their presentations are available on PEI website.

Be on the lookout State UST programs! The Emerging Fuels Task Force drafted questions for an all-State information request to collect State data for the purpose of updating their Story Map.

The 2019 Annual State Fund Survey was distributed to States in September. The State Fund-FR Task Force formed a workgroup that will begin assisting Vermont DEC to collect, interpret, and analyze data, answer questions from users, and modernize the survey tool, data reporting, and archived data storage. The Task Force also began collecting fact sheets from State UST programs about their individual abandoned tanks programs. These will be compiled on the ASTSMWO website.

The UST Task Force continued to discuss issues related to the implementation of the 2015 UST regulations during their monthly conference calls. Emergency generators, contractor shortages, testing practices, and sump water disposal were among the many topics discussed during sessions at the ASTSWMO Annual Meeting.

The 2020 National Tanks Conference & Expo will be September 22-24, 2020, in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. The Call for Abstracts is now open! Submit abstracts, suggested speakers, and topics by February 7, 2020.

New Publications


UST Insurance Brochure

Insurance Submittal Checklist

CERCLA Modernization Position Paper

Site Assessment Toolbox

Optimizing for the Post Construction Phase of Superfund Sites


Common Compliance Violations – FY2018 Report

Abandoned Tanks Programs Compendium

State Fund Usage Compendium

ASTSWMO Position Paper on Federal Facility Cleanups

Preparing CERCLA Post-Construction Cleanup Sites of Natural Disasters Emergency

Uniformity of Time Critical Removal Actions

LUST Workshop Recap

ASTSWMO brought LUST to New Orleans this summer! The LUST Task Force organized and conducted the 2019 LUST Workshop on September 17-19, 2019 at the Jung Hotel in New Orleans, LA. Over 120 attendees participated in the two and-a-half day Workshop, with representatives from 40 States, Puerto Rico, the District of Columbia, U.S. EPA OUST and ORD Headquarters, nine U.S. EPA Regions, and private industry.

The theme of the Workshop, “Sharing Solutions to Advance LUST Cleanups,” supported U.S. EPA’s new strategic measure to accelerate LUST cleanups nationwide and was reflected in several presentation and dialogue sessions. These sessions identified challenges that State programs encounter in closing LUST sites and offered possible solutions to advancing cleanups. Presentations and video recorded sessions are available on the ASTSWMO website.

The Workshop’s “ASTSWMO Gives Back” recipient was Groundwork New Orleans. Groundwork’s mission is to work to bring about the sustained regeneration, improvement and management of the physical environment by developing community-based partnerships that empower people, businesses and organizations to promote environmental, economic and social well-being. Workshop attendees donated over $500 to Groundwork, which was presented to their Executive Director, Todd Reynolds, on September 18.

Upcoming Meetings

ASTSWMO Meetings

2020 Mid-Year Meeting, Birmingham, AL, April 29-30, 2020

2020 RCRA Corrective Action Conference, Lexington, KY, June 3-5, 2020

Other Meetings

2020 National Tanks Conference, Pittsburgh, PA, Sept 22-24, 2020


ASTSWMO congratulates the following EPA staff on their upcoming retirements:

Barnes Johnson, EPA ORCR Director – 37 years

Betsy Devlin, EPA ORCR, Materials Recovery and Waste Management Division Director – 40 years

We also want to say job well done to Barnes for his Meritorious Presidential Rank Award. Here’s a link to the press release that has more information about the award.


2020 Team Membership

Registration for 2020 ITRC teams opens on December 2, 2019! Team membership is free and is open to professionals from state agencies, federal agencies, industry, academia, and NGOs. Next year’s teams include PFAS, 1,4-Dioxane, Incremental Sampling Methodology, Harmful Cyanobacterial Blooms, Vapor Intrusion Mitigation, and Green & Sustainable Remediation with Resiliency. Additionally, ITRC is forming a new team on the Use of Soil Background Concentrations in Risk Assessment. This team will work on providing a useful framework for using soil background concentrations in risk assessment and its application to soil-like materials such as sediments and mining sites. Learn more about ITRC’s 2020 teams here.

2020 Annual Meeting & PFAS Training

ITRC’s 25th Anniversary will be celebrated at the 2020 Annual Meeting in Minneapolis, MN on April 20-24. On April 24, ITRC will also hold a PFAS training workshop. Registration for both the Annual Meeting and the PFAS workshop is free for state employees and will open in December 2019.

Upcoming Documents

In December 2019, ITRC will release a guidance document on Implementing Advanced Site Characterization Tools (ASCTs)! Although these tools have been available for several years, they often are not used because users perceive them to be expensive and unavailable or do not understand how ASCTs work and how to interpret the acquired data. This document will improve stakeholders' ability to select and use ASCTs, as well as improve their ability to use the data gathered by ASCTs to evaluate cleanup options.

America Recycles Day Summit

ASTSWMO President Conchita Taitano (GU) and Executive Director Dania Rodriguez participated at EPA’s invitation in the 2019 America Recycles Day (ARD) Summit on November 15, 2019. EPA released a National Framework to Advance the U.S. Recycling Systems on November 15. The document details activities since the first Summit in 2018 to promote education and outreach, enhance materials management infrastructure, strengthen secondary materials markets and improve measurement, and outlines future activities.

The 2019 Summit wrapped up a week of various events to celebrate America Recycles Day, which included an EPA-sponsored Innovation Fair that showcased innovation in education and outreach, products containing recycled materials, and advanced recycling technologies. More on the Summit and related activities can be found on the EPA website here.

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