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Tier II Reporting and the Pennsylvania Tier II System (PATTS)

The Bureau of Occupational & Industrial Safety/Pennsafe Program is the state repository for Tier II reports filed by the owners and/or operators of Pennsylvania facilities. Under federal and state law, the county Local Emergency Planning Commission (LEPC) and the responding local fire department(s) also must receive a copy of the Tier II. The Tier II form as filed annually provides state and local officials and emergency responders with specific information on hazardous chemicals present at a facility during the prior calendar year. Pennsylvania Tier II reports are filed online using the Pennsylvania Tier II System (PATTS). A Tier II submission via any other online or electronic reporting program does not meet the reporting obligations in Pennsylvania.

Because online Tier II information is immediately available for emergency responders, facilities within the Commonwealth are strongly encouraged to submit their Tier II reports using PATTS. PATTS requires a secure user ID and password for a facility representative to access the program. Approved facility users can access and print the PATTS User Manual from the PATTS resource page in the application. The system also provides a video tutorial to assist users with the online reporting process.

Tier II data as provided by facilities for prior years was converted into the PATTS system, providing a facility submitter with access the complete Tier II reporting and billing history. In addition, the current data and attachments are rolled forward into the next year to make reporting faster and easier. PATTS accommodates annual, initial, revision and update reporting online. The Annual Report for the prior calendar year is due by March 1. A Revision Report is utilized when a facility needs to amend a prior annual report submission. An Update Report can be utilized for changing information that is not substance related but could be important in the event of an incident at a facility, such as changes in contact personnel, phone number or email addresses for facility contacts listed on the Tier II.

PENNSYLVANIA'S FIVE DAY INITIAL CHEMICAL REPORTING RULE

In addition to the annual reporting, Pennsylvania facilities are required to report the presence of a new hazardous material within 5 business days of the hazardous material first being present at the facility at reporting quantity. Accordingly, facilities must submit an Initial Tier II Report, the accompanying Safety Data Sheet (SDS) for the substance and an updated site plan to the state, as well as to their LEPC and responding local fire department(s), if they bring onsite any new hazardous material meeting the established threshold requirements that had not been reported as being present during the previous calendar year. An Initial Report can be easily filed in PATTS. Hazardous materials reported under this requirement must be reported again at the time of the next annual filing date with the appropriate fee payment. While the Annual Report identifies the total number of days each substance was onsite during the calendar year, an Initial advises the number of days that the new substance was onsite as of the date of the report filing.

Questions on Pennsylvania reporting requirements may be directed to the Bureau of Occupational & Industrial Safety/Pennsafe Program at 717-783-2071, Option 0; Fax: 717-783-5099; or via email to li-pennsafe@pa.gov or ra-li-psaf-patts@pa.gov.

Click here to go directly to the PATTS application.

RELEVANT LEGISLATION

Reporting required under federal SARA Title III, Section 312 and Pennsylvania's Hazardous Material Emergency Planning & Response Act (Act 165 of 1990). Pennsylvania adheres to the hazardous substance designations and quantities as established under EPCRA.

List: Chemicals considered hazardous under the federal OSHA Hazard Communication Standard.

Reporting Thresholds: Minimum thresholds have been established for Tier II reporting under Title III, Section 312. The federally established reporting thresholds are as follows:

For Extremely Hazardous Substances (EHSs) designated under section 302 of Title III, the reporting threshold is 500 pounds (or 227 kg.) or the threshold planning quantity (TPQ), whichever of those two amounts is lower. The Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) List of Lists should be consulted for the actual reporting quantities.

For all other hazardous substances for which facilities are required to have or prepare a Safety Data Sheet (SDS), the minimum reporting threshold is 10,000 pounds (or 4,540 kg.). Liquids must be converted from gallons to pounds for Tier II reporting.

On the Annual Report that is due March 1, a facility must report hazardous substances that were present at their facility at levels that equaled or exceeded these thresholds at any time during the previous calendar year.

All federally mandatory fields on the Tier II form must be completed. In addition, Pennsylvania requires both the county and municipality in which the facility is located, and the maximum and average daily weights in pounds (in addition to the federally-established range codes).

NEW FOR 2017 ANNUAL REPORTING

Under a final rule issued by EPA, the 5 physical/health hazard categories have been replaced by the 24 physical/health categories identified under the Globally Harmonized System (GHS). Facilities must consult the SDS and check off all hazards that apply. An SDS must be submitted for each hazardous substance reported. In the case of an obsolete substance that is no longer manufactured and for which an SDS cannot be obtained, please contact the Pennsafe Program for reporting guidance.

ATTACHMENTS

While listed as an optional attachment under federal reporting requirements, Pennsylvania requires the submission of a site plan and a safety data sheet (SDS) for each chemical reported. Site plan and SDS attachments in PATTS must be in either pdf or tif format, no larger than 5MB in size.

Site plans must:

  • be legible
  • provide a clear representation of where the facility is located on/from the road, access point(s), AND the specific location(s) of the substances being reported
  • include the following:
    • the assigned facility ID number for Tier II reporting
    • The facility name (must start with the company name)
    • Street Address ** (For remote sites with no street address, provide driving directions from a recognizable intersection)
    • City/State/Zip
    • Latitude/Longitude
    • Directional North
    • Show the actual street orientation
    • A listing/legend of all substances reported on the Tier II

REPORTING EXEMPTIONS

Section 311 (e) of Title III (EPCRA) excludes the following substances:

FDA Regulated Products: Any food, food additive, color additive, drug, or cosmetic regulated by the Food and Drug Administration.

Articles: Any substance present as a solid in any manufactured item to the extent exposure to the substance does not occur under normal conditions of use.

Household Packaged Products: Any substance to the extent it is used for personal, family, or household purposes, or is present in the same form and concentration as a product packaged for distribution and use by the general public.

Substances used in Research and Development Labs, Hospitals or other Medical Facilities: Any substance to the extent it is used in a research laboratory or a hospital or other medical facility under the direct supervision of a technically qualified individual.

Agricultural: Any substance to the extent it is used in routine agricultural operations or is a fertilizer held for sale by a retailer to the ultimate customer.

Gasoline and diesel fuel stored entirely underground at motor vehicle service stations engaged in the retail sale of fuel to the general public for motor vehicles used on land and that fully comply with requirements for underground storage tanks (USTs). The thresholds for these products are as follows: Gasoline - 75,000 gallons; Diesel fuel - 100,000 gallons. The standard reporting threshold of 10,000 pounds applies for all other vehicle fuels.

OSHA regulations, Section 1910.1200(b), stipulate exemptions from the requirement to prepare or have available an M/SDS. Consult those regulations or OSHA if you have questions on a particular substance.

PLEASE NOTE THAT A SIGNED EXEMPTION FROM REPORTING LETTER SHOULD BE SUBMITTED TO THE BUREAU OF OCCUPATIONAL & INDUSTRIAL SAFETY/PENNSAFE PROGRAM IF YOUR FACILITY HAD REPORTED IN THE PAST BUT NO LONGER NEEDS TO FILE. THE FACILITY CAN BE MARKED AS INACTIVE FOR TIER II REPORTING PURPOSES.

PENNSYLVANIA HAZARDOUS CHEMICAL FEES AND FEE EXEMPTIONS

The department assesses a $10 per chemical fee for each substance that is reported at or over the reporting threshold. The fee is not assessed for those chemicals identified as a 'voluntary' submission (a hazardous substance onsite but under reporting quantity).

Certain facilities may also be fee exempt. Consider the following:

Is your facility required to file a Tier II Report? If so, do you have hazardous substances stored, used and/or produced onsite at reporting threshold AND, is your facility a family farm, service station, state, federal or local government owned building, or a publicly owned and operated water, waste water treatment or sewer treatment plant and thus fee exempted by state law?

  • If yes, there is no fee required BUT the Pennsylvania Tier II form and attachments must be submitted for reportable substances that are not otherwise exempted.

  • If no, a $10 fee is required to the commonwealth for each billable chemical reported on the annual Tier II form. You must file the form and pay the fee by March 1st annually.

Federal agencies were directed by Executive Order No. 12856 signed by President Clinton on August 3, 1993, to comply with all provisions of EPCRA and the Pollution Prevention Act (PPA).

DUE DATE: The annual Tier II report must be submitted online by March 1st . The signed PATTS Invoice/Certification Form and the fee payment should be returned together to the Bureau of Occupational & Industrial Safety/Pennsafe Program. Online reporters need only return their certification/invoice as created in PATTS and the applicable state level fee to either of the addresses listed below.

The state level fee payment must be in the form of a check or money order and made payable to the Pennsylvania Hazardous Materials Response Fund.

General Mailing Address:

PA Department of Labor & Industry
Bureau of Occupational & Industrial Safety/Pennsafe Program
P.O. Box 68571
Harrisburg, PA 17106
Certified Mailing Address:

PA Department of Labor & Industry
Bureau of Occupational & Industrial Safety/Pennsafe Program
651 Boas Street, Room 1600
Harrisburg, PA 17121

The system can also generate hard copies of the Tier II for submission to the non-participating county LEPCs and local fire department(s) as required.

LOCAL EMERGENCY PLANNING COMMITTEES PARTNERSHIP

Most county Local Emergency Planning Committees (LEPCs) are partners in the PATTS Program. The following county LEPCs are signatory with the department and accept online reports in PATTS as meeting the filing requirements with them. A hard copy submission is not necessary for these 64 signatory counties: Adams, Allegheny, Armstrong, Beaver, Bedford, Blair, Bradford, Bucks, Butler, Cambria, Carbon, Centre, Chester, Clarion, Clearfield, Clinton, Columbia, Crawford, Cumberland, Dauphin, Delaware, Elk, Erie, Fayette, Franklin, Fulton, Greene, Huntingdon, Indiana, Jefferson, Juniata, Lackawanna, Lancaster, Lawrence, Lebanon, Lehigh, Luzerne, Lycoming, McKean, Mercer, Mifflin, Monroe, Montour, Montgomery, Northampton, Northumberland, Perry, Philadelphia, Pike, Potter, Schuylkill, Snyder, Somerset, Sullivan, Susquehanna, Tioga, Union, Venango, Warren, Washington, Wayne, Westmoreland, Wyoming and York. PATTS does not calculate the LEPC Tier II fee invoice. The LEPC will forward a separate invoice that will be due and payable to them.

For the 3 non-signatory LEPCs:

  • Cameron and Forest: Please print a copy of the PATTS Tier II report, sign and date it, and forward it with the related attachments to these counties.
  • Berks County, please complete an online Tier II report on their independent system in addition to filing your state report in PATTS.

For Fire Departments: With the exception of Philadelphia County, facilities should send a hard copy of the Tier II report and the attachments to the local responding fire department(s).

HARD COPY SUBMISSIONS

While hard copy reports may be submitted, the Bureau of Occupational & Industrial Safety/Pennsafe Program strongly encourages facilities to utilize PATTS to file their Tier II reports. Should you wish to file a hard copy report, the form is available for download from this site. The hard copy annual report, all related attachments (SDS for each reported substance and the site plan) and the applicable state fee (or a letter advising of the applicable fee exemption) are due annually by March 1st. These must be submitted to all three receiving entities – the Department of Labor & Industry, the Local Emergency Planning Committee and the responding fire department(s). A hard copy Initial Report along with the site plan and related SDS must be mailed within five days of the occurrence to the three receiving entities. There would no fee for hazardous substances reported on the Initial Tier II report.

The Pennsylvania Tier II Emergency and Hazardous Chemical Inventory, PSF-38, form is available here.