Both houses of the New York legislature are considering a bill to create a scrap tire abatement and market development program in the state.
Drafted by the administration of Republican Gov. George Pataki, the bill calls on the New York Department of Environmental Conservation to administrate the scrap tire program with the funds obtained from a $1.25 fee on each new tire sold in the state. One dollar of the fee would go to New York's scrap tire fund, with a quarter going to the tire dealer to defray administrative costs.
The DEC would be in charge of identifying illegal tire piles and devising abatement strategies. The legislation also creates a mechanism through which the department can seek reimbursement from tire pile owners and operators for cleanup costs. While the bill forbids the landfilling of tires, the DEC has the power to grant exemptions in cases where no alternative to landfilling exists.
Under the bill's provisions, the state Department of Economic Development will be responsible for aiding the private development of scrap tire recycling technologies.
``Because this is the governor's bill, his signature is assured,'' said Fred Andersen, director of the Senate Environmental Conservation Committee, where the bill was introduced.
Both the state Assembly and the Senate have recessed. Although there was no word from the Assembly on when it would go back in session, the Senate was scheduled to reconvene July 2 and probably vote on the scrap tire bill then, Andersen said.
New York state has more than 40 million stockpiled tires, more than any state except Texas, the Rubber Manufacturers Association said in a news release. The RMA has made the establishment of a scrap tire program in New York a priority, and has worked for years with the legislature to develop a bill.