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  • Local Emergency Planning Committee (LEPC)

    Local Emergency Planning CommitteeThe Local Emergency Planning Committee exists as a requirement established by the United States Congress in 1986 due to several catastrophic hazardous materials releases in the United States and overseas.  Congress created the Superfund Admendment and Reauthorization Act which contains four sections.  The third section or title is entitled "Emergency Planning and Community Right-to-Know Act-EPCRA", which requires states and local jurisdictions to create and maintain a group to plan, prevent, respond and mitigate a hazardous materials release.  The enforcement elements of this law are found in the Code of Federal Regulations oveseen by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

    The membership of this group is made up of Elected Officials, First Responders, Emergency Management, Environmental Agencies, Health, Community Organizations, Print and Broadcast Media, and Business Owners/Operators.  Community people representing these groups volunteer their time to carry out the requirements of the law and the local mission. This group actively works with business owners and operators, First Responders and the communities within a jurisdiction to ensure preparedness and response actions are in place and appropriate actions are taken.

    On January 28, 2015, the Annual Pima County LEPC Hazardous Materials Safety Workshop was be held.  The presentations from the Workshop are available for review and/or download, located under the Actvities/Training Tab.



    Members Needed

    In 1986, the Emergency Planning and Community Right-to-Know Act (EPCRA) was enacted by Congress under President Regan. In 2012, the Pima County LEPC celebrated 25 years of hazardous materials planning for the safety of the citizens in Pima County.
    If you represent a hazardous materials business, transporter, first response agency, elected official, media official, or volunteer group, the committee is seeking people from these areas to be members of this active community committee. Read more...


    The Pima County LEPC was established in 1987 in response to the requirements of the Emergency Planning and Community Right-to-know Act.  The Board of Supervisors authorized this committee to function in Pima County on June 5, 1987.  The LEPC functioned under the direction of the Health Department and now resides under the Office of Emergency Management.

    The Pima County LEPC has met consistenly since that time, developing and maintaining the Hazardous Materials Response Plan, obtaining equipemnet for the First Responders, providing community preparedness information and to work with local businesses to ensure safety within each community.


    Continue and improve Public Information:

    • For Citizens, Business owners/operators, Community Leadership;
    • Get involved with community groups;
    • Include more media in our activities;

    Hazardous Materials Response Team Support:

    • Support and provide education for the First Responders;
    • Improve the knowledge of the Roles & Responsibilities of the LEPC;
    • Provide an understanding of how LEPC requirements assists their role in the community;

    Outreach for the Pima County Businesses:

    • Improve technical services to the business community;
    • Creation of a Help Desk to assist the people in businesses who are responsible for compliance;
    • Assist and provide support to businesses in preparedness planning;
    • Expand the web site to provide more help to businesses;
    • Continue to provide educational opportunities;

    Better support of the membership on the various subcommittees and LEPC activities:

    • Continue to maintain the responsibilities and requirements identified in EPCRA and the Arizona State Statues;

    Informing the Community

    The Pima County Local Emergency Planning Committee (LEPC) was established in 1987 after the Federal Government enacted the Emergency Planning and Community Right-to-Know Act (EPCRA).The act or law was implemented in response to a growing concern about the effect(s) of a chemical release on a community. Several major events occurring around the world increased this concern. Bhopal India, Chernobyl Russia, and Love Canal New York are a few locations where the release of chemicals which caused injuries, heightened the concern to create this act.

    EPCRA requires the establishment of planning committees at the state and local levels to identify andmonitor the types and amounts of hazardous materials. EPCRA also requires the planning for releases of those same hazardous materials to include the locations where these hazardous materials are used or stored as well as the means these chemicals move. Other areas of required planning includes release notification requirements, reporting requirements, identifying response capabilities, and identifying the routes that hazardous materials travel through a state and their communities. This law empowers the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to oversee and enforce the contents of this law.

    Bridging Businesses and Industries

    This same law requires businesses and industries to provide to the public information about its chemical process, chemical storage and emissions and safety procedures and measures that are in place. The LEPC is the conduit between the businesses and industries that this law pertains to and the citizens of each community. These businesses and industries do this by submitting annual reports and plans to the state, the local government and the local fire department.

    In Pima County, these reports and plans go the Arizona Department of Emergency Management, the Pima County Office of Emergency Management & Homeland Security and the local fire department where the business or industry is located. Pima County has appointed a planner within the Office of Emergency Management & Homeland Security to work with the LEPC, to receive and maintain the annual reports, and to be a point of contact for industry, first responders, and the public.

    The Pima County LEPC is comprised of people from several different community agencies and/or organizations. These members represent elected officials, government leaders, environmental, law enforcement, fire departments, emergency medical services, hospitals, health care, educational, industries reporting chemicals, volunteer organizations and the public.

    Role & Responsibility in the Community

    The role and responsibility of the LEPC is to ensure a safe environment for the citizens of Pima County from a hazardous materials release, specifically for those areas near the use of or the transportation of harmful chemicals. This is managed by developing procedures for submitting reports, developing a county-wide plan to report and respond to a release, conducting and review of surveys, ensuring response capabilities are in place, and providing chemical release information to the citizens of Pima County. The LEPC meets on a quarterly schedule to manage the roles and responsibilities indicated and to address new chemical issues affecting the communities in Pima County. The LEPC meetings are open to the public. Agencies concerned for emergency planning are encouraged to attend. Our mission is to serve all of Pima County and to facilitate all hazardous emergency preparedness issues including SARA Title III, Hazardous Materials and related public safety matters as determined appropriate by the LEPC membership.

    EPCRA: What it means to State, Tribe, Local Agencies and the Community

    This training program was developed by EPA to educate LEPC Members and the commuity on the elements of EPCRA.  This is an EPA Course and is still being bata tested.  LEPC Members are encouraged to complete the training to become better educated with EPCRA and thier role as an LEPC Member.


    2016 Hazardous Materials Safety Workshop (Wednesday January 27, 2016)

    2015 Hazardous Materials Safety Workshop

    2014 Hazardous Materials Safety Seminar Presentations

    2013 LEPC Table-Top Exercise

    Business Education Seminar Presentations

    Safety Performance Indicators Program


    2012 Emergency Response Guidebooks

    2012 Emergency Response Guidebooks have arrived. The U.S. Department of Transportation prints copies for each Emergency Response Unit in the United States (EMS, Fire, Police, Rescue, HazMat). Each emergency response agency in Pima County is entitled to have one.

    Contact John Wisner to get copies for your department.
    Office: (520) 724-9300
    E-mail: john.wisner@pima.gov

    LEPC Related Links:

    Pima County Department of Environmental Quality

    Arizona Emergency Response Commission Newsletter

    Additional Resources

    U.S. Department of Transportation

    Environmental Protection Agency

    Homeland Security

    Pima County LEPC

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    Local Emergency Planning Committee

    (520) 724-9300
    (520) 724-9301 24/7 On-Call
    Fax: (520) 724-9310

    John Wisner,
    District Emergency Coordinator

    (520) 724-9311 Direct
    (520) 395-5560 Cell

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