PHMSA Considers Changes to the Registration and Fees Assessment Program

The Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) is seeking comments on adjustments to the Registration and Fees Assessment Program.  Changes to the program are required in order to bring the program to the authorized level mandated by the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act of 2021.  PHMSA will hold a public meeting on June 28, 2023 in Washington DC.

What is the Purpose of the Registration and Fees Assessment Program?

The Registration and Fees Assessment Program is used to fund Emergency Response Preparedness (EP) Grants.  EP grants support hazardous materials emergency response planning and training activities by states, local governments, and Native American tribes. EP grants also fund nonprofit organizations to provide ‘‘train-the-trainer’’ programs for hazardous materials emergency response training and hazardous materials employee training. Additionally, EP grants support the development of the Emergency Response Guidebook (ERG) that assists emergency responders in determining appropriate response measures and provides funds for grantee monitoring and technical assistance. Congress recognized the need for additional support for emergency responders, particularly responders to hazardous materials incidents.

Who is Required to Register?

Anyone who offers for transportation or transports and of the following items is required to register and pay a fee.

  • A highway route-controlled quantity of a Class 7 (radioactive) material;
  • More than 25 kg (55 pounds) of a Division 1.1, 1.2, or 1.3 (explosive) material;
  • More than one L (1.06 quarts) per package of a material extremely toxic by inhalation (i.e., “material poisonous by inhalation,” that meets the criteria for “hazard zone A”);
  • A shipment of a quantity of hazardous materials in a bulk packaging having a capacity equal to or greater than 13,248 L (3,500 gallons) for liquids or gases or more than 13.24 cubic meters (468 cubic feet) for solids;
  • A shipment in other than a bulk packaging of 2,268 kg (5,000 pounds) gross weight or more of one class of hazardous materials for which placarding of a vehicle, rail car, or freight container is required for that class,; or
  • A quantity of hazardous material that requires placarding.

All persons required to register must do so by submitting DOT Form F5800.2 by June 20 each year.

PHMSA is currently authorized to charge between $250 and $3,000 for registration fees.  A chart in § 107.612 outlines the amount paid.

What’s Happening Now?

PHMSA is required by law to fund the EP grant program to the amount required by law. They have a couple of options for doing so. They can increase the scope of the registration program and require more entities register, increase the registration amount, or request that Congress increase the maximum amount they are allowed to charge registrants.

If registration fees remain at a maximum $3,000 per year, PHMSA is considering the following options for comment:

  1. Keep the existing registration requirements (see 49 CFR 107.601) and raise the registration fee for large businesses from $2,575 to $3,000.
  2. Keep the existing registration requirements and apply a nominal fee (e.g., $25) for each facility or geographic location from which a registered person (i.e., a company) offers for transportation, or transports, certain hazardous materials.
  3. Modify assignment of the registration fee and/or amount based on the commensurate hazard posed (e.g., shipping Packing Group I materials vs. Packing Group III materials) 4 or risk profile (e.g., frequent vs. infrequent shipments).
  4. Expand the registration requirements. For example, certain hazardous materials are not subject to placarding when shipped domestically. Therefore, a person who offers for transportation, or transports, these materials is generally exempt from registration, but these requirements could be expanded with appropriate risk-based justifications.
  5. Expand the registration fee requirements to include certain persons who acquire approvals or special permits from PHMSA that otherwise are not subject to registration, but which should be based on a public risk-based justification.

If Congress allows an increase in the maximum fee, PHMSA is considering the following options for comment:

  1. Maintain the current maximum registration fees and create an upper tier of a higher fee for a certain category of very large businesses.
  2. Change the registration requirements to reduce the overall number of registrants.
  3. Keep the existing registration requirements and raise the registration fee for large businesses from $2,575 to a dollar value below the Congressionally authorized maximum fee (e.g., if the maximum allowed were increased from $3,000 to $5,000).
  4. Raise fees for specific business types, classes of material, or commodities (e.g., poisonous by inhalation material), which are considered extremely high risk.

PHMSA published a proposal requesting feedback on these options.  They received limited response.  Due to the lack of response, PHMSA has schedules a public meeting to collect stakeholder feedback.

Hazmat University Provides 49 CFR (DOT Ground) Online Hazmat Training

The Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA), a division of the United States Department of Transportation (DOT), has established legal requirements for individuals involved in the handling, shipping, or transportation of hazardous materials by ground in commerce. According to these regulations prescribed in 49 CFR, anyone working with such materials must complete specific training before they can legally handle, ship, or engage in any related activities.

To fulfill the mandatory 49 CFR training requirements and meet the Registration and Fees Assessment Program needs, Hazmat University offers comprehensive hazmat online training courses focused on DOT Ground regulations. These courses provide the necessary initial or recurrent training for individuals involved in the shipping, handling, and/or transportation of hazardous materials by ground in commerce. The training content is based on the guidelines outlined in Title 49 of the United States Code of Federal Regulations (49 CFR).

By law, employees who have previously undergone initial or recurrent training are required to undergo recurrent training at least once every three years. Hazmat University’s 49 CFR (DOT Ground) training course is specifically designed for shippers, freight forwarders, hazmat employees, and other individuals engaged in the handling, shipping, and transportation of hazardous materials by ground.

Our hazmat online courses are meticulously crafted to be interactive, experiential, and user-friendly, catering to the needs of hazmat employees, shippers, and freight forwarders. With our industry-leading Dynamic Learning Environment, we provide a seamless and hassle-free hazmat online training experience. For more information about Hazmat University’s online hazmat training courses or to speak with one of our knowledgeable representatives, please call (844) 427-0167 or reach us online.

Be Confident. Be Competent. Be Compliant.