Discussions have begun on reform of North Carolina's Air Toxics Program. The first of several meetings geared at reform of the State Air Toxics Program was held the last week of October 2011.

The meeting was scheduled at the request of Representative Mitch Gillespie, co-chair of the Environmental Review Commission. Rep. Gillespie has indicated that he intends to introduce an air toxics reform bill during the 2012 legislative session, and asked that representatives of the regulated community and DENR meet to determine whether or not the regulated community and DENR could agree on needed reforms.

The regulated community was represented by Manufacturers and Chemical Industry Council of North Carolina (MCIC) President Preston Howard; employees of Progress Energy, Duke Energy, and Shurtape; and Kilpatrick-Townsend law firm. DENR was represented by Asst. Secretary Robin Smith, DAQ Director Sheila Holman and DAQ Deputy Director Mike Abraczinskas.

Mr. Howard led off discussions by saying that the regulated community was seeking to reform the NC program to bring it more in line with air toxics programs in Virginia and South Carolina. In those programs, no individual source is regulated by both EPA and the State. No decisions on specific changes that would be included in upcoming legislation have yet been made