In general it is the standard practice of the District to issue Notices to Comply (NTC) and/or Notices of Violation (NOV) when a violation of air pollution control laws, rules and/or regulations is alleged to have occurred. The purpose of the NTCs and NOVs are to officially give notice of and provide documentation of the alleged violation. NTCs and NOVs may be issued for alleged violations of any of the following: Division 26 of the California Health and Safety Code (commencing with §§39000); any order, permit, rule or regulation of the California Air Resources Board (CARB); any order, permit, rule or regulation of the District; and/or any order of the District Hearing Board. While each alleged violation is evaluated as a unique situation the overall handling of alleged violations generally follows the same procedure.
Alleged violations are often identified during an inspection by District staff as part of the permit renewal process. They may also be identified during inspections resulting from complaints, during review of documents submitted to the District, or as a result of a failure to submit required documentation. Once an alleged violation has been identified District staff will determine if the alleged violation is appropriate for enforcement and whether or not to issue an NTC or NOV. In general NTCs are issued for alleged violations that are minor in nature and do not involve emissions of air contaminants (See Rule 112 – Notices to Comply). NTCs generally only require correction of the alleged violation and often do not involve monetary penalties however failure to comply with an NTC will result in the issuance of an NOV. NOVs are generally issued for more serious alleged violations and those where the violation may have caused emissions of air contaminants.
Once an NOV has been issued the alleged violator is required to correct the alleged violation and is given the opportunity to submit documentation explaining why the violation occurred and what has been done to ensure that the violation does not reoccur. An office conference to discuss the alleged violation and any proposed penalty assigned to it may be requested. NOVs that are not settled pursuant to this process may be referred for prosecution in court pursuant to Health & Safety Code §§42400 et seq.
Health & Safety Code §42409 requires the District post a list of minimum/maximum penalties imposed for alleged violations. Due to the large number and types of potential violations the District can only provide a generalized penalty list. PLEASE NOTE: The penalties listed may not accurately represent the potential penalty assigned in any specific circumstance. The District has substantial enforcement discretion in regards to the prosecution of alleged violation and the methods of determining penalties. The enforcement practices and potential penalties as listed may or may not be applied to any specific alleged violation.