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June 17, 2019

“20 By '20”: Commissioner Dykes Announces DEEP’s New “20 By '20” Initiative at the 2019 CBIA Energy and Environment Conference… And Solicits the Public’s Input

On June 13, 2019, Commissioner Katie Dykes announced the Department of Energy & Environmental Protection’s top 16 initiatives during her keynote address at the Connecticut Business & Industry Association’s annual Energy and Environment Conference.

Termed the “20 by '20 Initiative,” the program proposed by Commissioner Dykes aims to make DEEP’s regulatory processes more predictable, efficient, and transparent—and will focus her team on 20 key, measurable initiatives to accomplish that goal by December 31, 2020.

So far, the Commissioner and her team have come up with the following 16 goals and they want the public’s suggestions for the remaining four:  

GOAL 1: Make permitting timeframes more transparent by publishing expected permitting timeframes online and publicly tracking results

GOAL 2: Enhance pre-application assistance by strengthening internal coordination of pre-application meetings

GOAL 3: Reduce the number of legacy permits pending by specifically assigning teams to review them

GOAL 4: Reduce the time for Transfer Act audits by setting internal deadlines for “audit”/ “no audit” decisions

GOAL 5: Finalize Remediation Standards Regulations (“RSR”) and Environmental Use Restriction (“EUR”) Regulations

GOAL 6: Fast track “same-to-same” renewal time for solid waste processing permits by implementing LEAN recommendations: DEEP will identify whether a renewal includes modifications; and if not, accelerate approval

GOAL 7: Increase focus on converting individual permit processes to general permits, where possible

GOAL 8: Eliminate some permits and move to “permit by rule,” by shifting some of DEEP’s resources to regulation-writing and maintaining an effective compliance assurance and enforcement presence

GOAL 9: Simplify Natural Diversity Data Base (“NDDB”) determinations by providing instant answers through a publicly-accessible online NDDB portal for 60% of applications

GOAL 10: Increase the efficiency of grant administration by improving internal processes for issuing grant contracts

GOAL 11: Implement agency-wide succession planning to address the fact that 40% of DEEP’s staff will be eligible for retirement in the next few years

GOAL 12: Establish a permitting concierge function for permit applications: DEEP staff will respond to inquiries regarding the status of a permit application within 48 hours

GOAL 13: Accelerate e-governance integration

GOAL 14: Enhance data transparency by more fully utilizing Connecticut’s Open Data Portal and make more DEEP documentation electronically available

GOAL 15: Develop predictable regulation adoption timeline by posting milestones for key regulations online

GOAL 16: Increase stakeholder engagement in DEEP’s regulatory process improvement efforts

GOALS 17 – 20: Commissioner Dykes acknowledged that DEEP’s list is still a few goals short.  Thus, she encouraged all stakeholders to provide suggestions directly to DEEP by emailing 20by20@ct.gov.

For more information on DEEP’s “20 by '20” Initiative, please contact Amanda Gurren at 860-424-4338, Lee Hoffman at 860-424-4315 or your responsible Pullman Attorney.  If you prefer, you may wish to investigate the “20 by '20” Initiative further on DEEP’s website at https://www.ct.gov/deep/cwp/view.asp?a=2688&Q=608964&deepNav_GID=1511   

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