6 NYCRR Part 218, 252, and 200 Regulatory Flexibility Analysis for Small Businesses and Local Governments
1. Effect of rule:
The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (Department) is proposing to amend 6 NYCRR Part 200, and 6 NYCRR Part 218. Part 218 is being amended to incorporate revisions to the low emission vehicle (LEV), greenhouse gas (GHG), zero emission vehicle (ZEV), environmental performance label, and new aftermarket catalytic converter requirements that have been adopted by the California Air Resources Board (CARB) as part of the LEV program. The Department is also incorporating California's emissions warranty and recall provisions. Part 252 is being repealed and its contents are being updated and incorporated into Part 218. These changes apply to vehicles purchased by consumers, businesses, and government agencies in New York and may impact businesses involved in manufacturing, selling, leasing, or purchasing passenger cars or trucks.
State and local governments are also consumers of vehicles that will be regulated under the proposed GHG amendments. Therefore, local governments who own or operate vehicles in New York State are subject to the same requirements as owners of private vehicles in New York State; i.e., they must purchase California certified vehicles. This rulemaking is not a local government mandate pursuant to Executive Order 17.
The changes are an addition to the current LEV standards. The new motor vehicle emissions program has been in effect in New York State since model year 1993 for passenger cars and light-duty trucks, with the exception of the 1995 model year, and the Department is unaware of any significant adverse impact to small businesses or local governments as a result of previous revisions.
2. Compliance requirements:
There are no specific requirements in the regulation which apply exclusively to small businesses or local governments. Reporting, record keeping and compliance requirements are effective statewide. Automobile dealers (some of which may be small businesses) selling new cars are required to sell or offer for sale only California certified vehicles. These proposed amendments will not result in any additional reporting requirements to dealerships other than the current requirements to maintain records demonstrating that vehicles are California certified. This documentation is the same documentation already required by the New York State Department of Motor Vehicles for vehicle registration. If local governments are buying new fleet vehicles they should make sure that the vehicles are California certified.
The proposed aftermarket catalytic converter requirements are not expected to have an adverse impact on the majority of New York State businesses. The greatest impact will be on businesses which sell, advertise, or install used catalytic converters, as these activities will be prohibited by the proposed regulation. The result will be a transfer of business and associated income from companies selling used catalytic converters to companies selling new aftermarket or OEM catalytic converters. The total sales of catalytic converters will remain unchanged. The Department expects that any increase in development and production costs will be passed along to consumers in the form of higher purchase prices.
3. Professional services:
There are no professional services needed by small business or local government to comply with the proposed rule.
4. Compliance costs:
New York State currently maintains personnel and equipment to administer the LEV program. It is expected that these personnel will be retained to administer the revisions to this program. Therefore, no additional costs will be incurred by the State of New York for the administration of this program.
5. Minimizing adverse impact:
The regulations are not expected to have significant adverse impacts on automobile dealers. Dealerships may experience a reduction in sales revenue if consumers decide to delay, or forego, purchasing new advanced technology vehicles in response to increased prices. However, these delayed or lost sales could potentially be offset by early adopters and consumers desiring vehicles with reduced operating costs. Dealerships may also incur expenses to train staff to sell and service advanced technology vehicles. Dealerships may experience a reduction in service revenue due to the emissions warranty regulations. This is due to the fact that original equipment manufacturers (OEM) generally reimburse dealerships for warranty repairs at a rate lower than the rate charged to retail customers. Dealerships may experience increased revenue from sales of catalytic converters for vehicle models for which there are no certified aftermarket catalytic converters.
It will be difficult, if not impossible, to minimize the adverse impact of the aftermarket and used catalytic converter standards on businesses which sell, advertise, or install used catalytic converters. The use, sale, or installation of used catalytic converters is expressly prohibited due to the lack of economically feasible screening methods to evaluate the emissions reduction performance of used catalytic converters. Each converter will have to be tested individually to determine if it was acceptable for reuse, which is a costly and time consuming process. Further, the existing methods are unable to determine if the used catalytic converters will meet the performance and durability requirements required by the new aftermarket catalytic converter standards. It is possible that companies supplying used catalytic converters will be able to generate some revenue by recycling the precious metal content of used converters.
There will be no adverse impact on local governments who own or operate vehicles in the state because they are subject to the same requirements as those imposed on owners of private vehicles. In other words, state and local governments will be required to purchase California certified vehicles. This rulemaking is not a local government mandate pursuant to Executive Order 17.
This regulation contains exemptions for emergency vehicles, and military tactical vehicles and equipment.
6. Small business and local government participation:
The Department plans on holding public hearings at various locations throughout New York State after the amendments are proposed. Small businesses and local governments will have the opportunity to attend these public hearings. Additionally, there will be a public comment period in which interested parties can submit written comments.
7. Economic and technological feasibility:
The standards are not expected to have significant adverse impacts on automobile dealers. Dealerships will be required to ensure that the vehicles they sell are California certified. Starting with the 1993 model year, most manufacturers have included provisions in their ordering mechanisms to ensure that only California certified vehicles are shipped to New York dealers. The implementation of the standards is not expected to be burdensome in terms of additional reporting requirements for dealers. As stated previously, there would be no change in the competitive relationship with out-of-state businesses.
The regulations attempt to minimize adverse impacts on automobile manufacturers by phasing-in emissions standards over several model years, offering credit incentives, allowing pooling of vehicle sales to demonstrate compliance, and offering alternative compliance pathways to increase compliance flexibility among other options. The warranty and recall provisions will have the required 2 years of lead time and will not be applied to vehicles retroactively.
As discussed previously, the use, sale, or installation of used catalytic converters is expressly prohibited due to the lack of economically feasible screening methods to evaluate the emissions reduction performance of used catalytic converters. The result will be a transfer of business and associated income from companies supplying used catalytic converters to companies supplying new aftermarket or OEM catalytic converters. The total sales of catalytic converters will remain unchanged. Any increase in new aftermarket catalytic converter development and production costs will most likely be passed along to consumers in the form of higher purchase prices.
8. Cure Period.
In accordance with NYS State Administrative Procedures Act (SAPA) Section 202-b, this rulemaking does not include a cure period because the Department is undertaking this rulemaking to comply with changes California has made to its vehicle emissions program in order to maintain identicality with section 177 of the Clean Air Act.