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  • Pima County Local Emergency Planning Committee

    Pima County LEPCIn 1986, as a result of several catastrophic hazardous materials releases in the United States and overseas, Congress passed the Superfund Amendments and Reauthorization Act. Included was Title III Emergency Planning and Community Right to Know Act (EPCRA) which calls for the establishment of State emergency response commissions, which in turn are tasked with appointing local emergency planning committees (LEPCs) to develop strategies to prevent, respond to and mitigate hazardous materials releases in their communities.  In Arizona, there are LEPCs in each of the 15 counties.

    The role of the LEPC and its members is to form partnerships with local industries and government entities as a resource for enhancing preparedness for hazardous materials emergencies. The steps in this process include:
    • Ensuring hazard analyses are completed and updated including hazmat incidents as well as potential off-site effects of facility releases;
    • Integrating hazardous materials incident planning with local emergency plans;
    • Ensuring hazardous materials response capability assessments are accomplished and shortfalls identified and addressed;
    • Enhancing hazardous materials preparedness and response capabilities through responder and business training;
    • Participating in development of mutual aid agreements with relevant jurisdictions; and
    • Practicing and testing hazmat plans and response capabilities with realistic tabletop and field exercises.
    It is essential for industry to play a part in this process to ensure facility response plans and capabilities dovetail with local government emergency plans. Misperceptions between industry and response personnel can have a catastrophic impact on not only the business but on the citizens of the planning district of Pima County. According to the Emergency Planning and Community Right to Know Act (EPCRA), every facility subject to regulation is required to identify and provide the name of a facility emergency coordinator, report types and quantities of regulated chemicals on site, provide Safety Data Sheets (SDSs), and permit local fire departments to inspect their facilities. 


    In October 1986, Congress passed Public Law 99-499, the Superfund Amendments and Reauthorization Act (SARA) Title Ill, also known as the Emergency Planning and Community Right-to-Know Act (EPCRA). This federal law requires the Governor of each state to appoint a State Emergency Response Commission (SERC) which then will divide each state into Local Emergency Planning Districts, each governed by a Local Emergency Planning Committee (LEPC). In Arizona, local planning districts were determined by county boundaries. The Pima County LEPC is one of 15 LEPC's in the State of Arizona.  The Arizona State Emergency Response Commission (AZSERC) resides with the Department of Environmental Quality after moving from the Arizona Department of Military and Emergency Affairs (ADEMA) in 2016. 
    The Pima County Board of Supervisors on June 5, 1987, approved the formation and authorized operation of the Pima County LEPC.  In 2010, the Pima County LEPC became a member of the National Association of SARA Title Three Professional Officers (NASTTPO).  This national organization supports the operations of the SERC and LEPCs across the United States.


    Continuously improve public, business and government knowledge related to hazardous materials incident planning and response through education and training, exercising, and outreach by:

    • Providing assistance and support to businesses related to hazardous materials incident planning and preparedness;
    • Participation in community outreach efforts;
    • Building partnerships with other emergency management, environmental, health and safety organizations; and
    • Utilizing the media and social media to meet public outreach goals.

    Support hazardous materials response teams and first responder agencies by:

    • Supporting educational opportunities through Hazardous Materials Emergency Planning grant coordination with the Arizona Department of Environmental Quality (ADEQ);
    • Supporting exercise coordination and participation; 
    • Coordinating planning and operational guidelines between industry, response, and governmental entities; and
    • Providing guidance and approval on the use of Emergency Response Funds allocated through ADEQ. 

    Maintain the responsibilities and requirements of LEPCs as required in EPCRA and the Arizona Revised Statutes.

    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 EPA Course provides a good overview on EPCRA and CERCLA components appropriate for LEPC Members and the hazardous materials community/industry.  Pima County LEPC Members are encouraged to complete the training to become better educated with EPCRA and to better understand their role as an LEPC Member.


        2020 Emergency Response Guidebook

    The 2020 Emergency Response Guidebooks have arrived.  LEPC members have been contacted to pick up their portion of the Guidebooks.  

    LEPC Related Links:

    Pima County Department of Environmental Quality

    Arizona Emergency Response Commission

    Additional Resources

    U.S. Department of Transportation

    U.S. Environmental Protection Agency

    U.S. Dept. of Homeland Security


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    Local Emergency Planning Committee

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

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