President's Proposed Budget Could Impose Significant User Fees for Special Permits/Approvals Applicants

NPGA reported on several elements of President Obama's proposed budget for Fiscal Year 2012. One of those elements includes proposed user fees for those who apply for Special Permits or Approvals. Currently, there are no fee requirements for either Special Permits or Approvals.

NPGA has learned that President Obama's budget proposes user fees for applications for Special Permits in the amount of $3000 per application and $1000 for a renewal of an existing Special Permit.

For approvals, the proposed budget specifies an application fee of $700. For cylinder manufacturer approvals, the budget proposes a fee of $3000 per application.

Given that the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) recently incorporated both industry special permits (SP-11209 and SP-13341) directly into the hazmat regulations, the special permit user fees are less of an issue since there will no longer be a need for NPGA to seek renewal. Individual companies that wish to obtain their own special permit in the future, however, will be faced with this new fee.

However, the bigger issue for the propane industry will be the fees associated with approvals. Many NPGA members who obtain Requalifier Identification Numbers (RINs) to requalify their cylinders would be required to pay the $700 application fee should this budget request be approved, since RINs are considered approvals. This would be a significant impact on the industry with no measurable impact on safety.

NPGA is working closely with allies on Capitol Hill to remove these new user fees from the proposed budget.



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