2015 Oklahoma Statutes
Title 17. Corporation Commission
§17-310. Inspections and investigations - Violations - Notice - Failure to take corrective action - Hearings - Orders - Access to real property.
A. If upon inspection or investigation, or whenever the Corporation Commission determines that there are reasonable grounds to believe that a storage tank system owner, operator or responsible person is in violation of the Oklahoma Storage Tank Regulation Act or of any rule promulgated pursuant thereto or of any order of the Commission, the Commission shall give written notice to the alleged violator specifying the cause of complaint. Such notice shall require that corrective action be immediately initiated. The notice shall be delivered to the alleged violator in accordance with the provisions of subsection C of this section.
B. 1. If corrective action is not taken in response to the notice issued pursuant to subsection A of this section, the Commission shall initiate proceedings and hold a hearing to determine if:
a.the alleged violator should be found in violation of Commission rules,
b.the alleged violator should be found to be in violation of the provisions of the Oklahoma Storage Tank Regulation Act,
c.the permit issued to the alleged violator should be suspended, revoked or not reissued,
d.the application for a permit should be denied, or
e.whether any other appropriate relief should be granted.
2. Notice of the hearing may be combined with the notice issued pursuant to subsection A of this section and shall be delivered to the alleged violator at least twenty (20) days prior to the time set for hearing. The notice shall be delivered to the alleged violator in accordance with the provisions of subsection C of this section.
3. After hearing, the Commission shall make findings of fact and conclusions of law, and enter its order reflecting its decision in the matter. The order of the Commission shall become final and binding on all parties unless appealed to the Supreme Court as provided in Section 318 of Title 75 of the Oklahoma Statutes within sixty (60) days of the Commission’s order. Except as otherwise provided by this section, Sections 319 through 322 of Title 75 of the Oklahoma Statutes shall be applicable to such appeals.
C. 1. Except as otherwise expressly provided by law, any notice, order, or other instrument issued by or pursuant to authority of the Commission may be served on any person affected thereby personally, by publication, or by mailing a copy of the notice, order, or other instrument by certified mail directed to the person affected at the last-known post office address as shown by the files or records of the Commission. Service shall be considered complete if certified mail service is returned unclaimed, or refused. Proof of service shall be made as in the case of service of a summons or by publication or may be made by the affidavit of the person who did the mailing.
2. Such proof of service shall be filed in the court clerk’s office of the Commission.
3. Every certificate or affidavit of service made and filed as provided in this section shall be prima facie evidence of the facts therein stated. A certified copy thereof shall have like force and effect.
D. 1. The Commission shall provide notice and an opportunity for hearing to:
a.the surface owner of real property where any corrective action is to be taken if such person is not the owner or operator of the storage tank system, and
b.the owner of real property adjacent to the location of the corrective action if such real property owner will be adversely affected by the corrective action.
2. The notice shall advise such real property owner or owners that the corrective action is to be taken and that the owner’s cooperation will be required for that action to be taken. The Commission shall give the owner or owners of such real property, as the case might be, an opportunity for hearing and to present evidence on the matter.
E. 1. The Commission is vested with the adjudicative authority to enter orders allowing a petroleum storage tank system owner, operator or otherwise responsible person access to property not owned by the tank owner, operator, or otherwise responsible person when necessary to investigate, remediate or perform corrective action as the result of a release. Actions shall be brought by the tank owner, operator or otherwise responsible person seeking access to the property not owned by the tank owner, operator, otherwise responsible person, or by the Director of the Petroleum Storage Tank Division.
2. An order granting access shall only be entered upon a determination that access cannot be obtained by any other means and that the petroleum storage tank system owner, operator or otherwise responsible person seeking access has made a good faith effort to obtain access.
3. The Commission shall determine the reasonable compensation, if any, to be paid to the owner of the property which is to be accessed for the use of the property to investigate, remediate or perform corrective action as the result of a release.
4. An order granting access to property shall be upon such terms as to reasonably minimize the impact of the access upon the owner’s use of the property and to protect the rights of the property owner.
Added by Laws 1989, c. 90, § 10, emerg. eff. April 21, 1989. Amended by Laws 1993, c. 344, § 9, emerg. eff. June 9, 1993; Laws 1998, c. 375, § 17, emerg. eff. June 9, 1998; Laws 2004, c. 430, § 3, emerg. eff. June 4, 2004; Laws 2005, c. 435, § 7, eff. Nov. 1, 2005.
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