40 CFR § 162.155 - Suspension of State registration authority.
(1) If the Administrator finds that a State is not capable of exercising, or has failed to exercise, adequate control over its registration program, so that the State cannot ensure that registrations issued by it will be in accord with the purposes of FIFRA, then the Administrator may suspend the State's authority to register pesticides under sec. 24(c) of the Act. Registrations issued by the State after suspension of its authority will not be considered valid under FIFRA. Registrations issued by the State prior to suspension will not be affected by the suspension.
(b) Grounds for suspension.
(1) The Administrator may suspend a State's registration authority due to lack of, or failure to exercise, adequate control by the State over its sec. 24(c) registration program. Adequate control includes, but is not limited to, all of the following:
(i) Access to appropriate scientific and technical personnel to review data and make determinations as required by § 162.153.
(ii) Registration procedures satisfying § 162.153.
(iii) Complete and accurate records of State registrations.
(iv) Adequate legal authority. (A) To deny, suspend, revoke, or amend a State registration when the registration is not in compliance with FIFRA, this subpart, or State law, or when necessary to prevent unreasonable adverse effects on the environment.
(B) To enter, at reasonable times, by consent, warrant, or other legal means, any establishment where pesticides are produced or held for distribution or sale, to inspect, sample, and observe whether pesticides are being produced or distributed in compliance with FIFRA, this subpart, State law, and the terms of any State registration.
(2) The Administrator may suspend a State's registration authority if the State fails to exercise the controls specified in paragraph (b)(1) of this section, or if the State refuses to correct within a reasonable time any other significant deficiencies in its regulatory program, as specified by the Administrator in a notice of intent to suspend.
(c) Procedures for suspension.
(1) Prior to suspending the registration authority of any State, the Administrator will notify the State lead agency, in writing, of the Administrator's intent to suspend, and of the specific grounds for suspension. The notice of intent will specify whether the suspension will be complete or partial, and will provide the State an opportunity to respond and a reasonable amount of time, not less than 30 days from the date the notice is received, in which to correct the deficiencies specified in the notice. If the State does not correct the specified deficiencies within the reasonable time allowed by the notice, or if the Administrator has not withdrawn the notice of intent before that time, the notice of intent will be published in the Federal Register, and the public given an opportunity to comment thereon.
(2) If requested by the affected State lead agency within 30 days of receipt of the notice of intent to suspend, an informal consultation between appropriate State and EPA officials will be held to discuss the proposed suspension. In such a case, the Administrator shall not make a final decision on the proposed suspension until after the consultation. The Administrator shall consider all relevant information presented at the consultation, or in any other appropriate manner, in determining whether to suspend the State's authority. If the Administrator determines, on the basis of such information, that the deficiencies listed in the notice of intent no longer exist, or will be corrected in a reasonable time, then the Administrator will withdraw, in writing, the notice of intent to suspend.
(3) Within ten days of the date a notice of intent to suspend is published in the Federal Register, a State may request a public hearing to consider the proposed suspension. If a hearing is requested, the Administrator will:
(i) Schedule a public hearing to be held in that State.
(ii) Publish in the Federal Register a notice announcing the date, time, and location of the hearing.
(iii) Appoint a presiding officer who shall preside over the hearing.
(iv) Prescribe additional, appropriate procedures for the conduct of the hearing, including procedures for the presentation of relevant material evidence from the State, EPA, or members of the public who would be affected by the outcome of the hearing. Evidence may be presented in either oral or written form, at the discretion of the Administrator.
(4) Following the close of any hearing held under paragraph (c)(3) of this section, the presiding officer shall make a recommended decision that the State's authority to register pesticides under sec. 24(c) of FIFRA be suspended, in whole or in part, or that the State's authority not be suspended and that the notice of intent to suspend be withdrawn.
(5) Any recommended decision made by a presiding officer under paragraph (c)(4) of this section may be appealed to the Administrator within 30 days after its issuance by the State or by EPA. Any recommended decision which is not appealed, or which the Administrator does not review on his own initiative, will become a final Agency action 30 days after its issuance.
(6) If no hearing is requested under paragraph (c)(3) of this section, or if a recommended decision is appealed to the Administrator under paragraph (c)(5) of this section, the Administrator shall issue a final order either suspending the State's authority to register pesticides under section 24(c) of FIFRA, in whole or in part, or withdrawing the notice of intent to suspend.
(7) Any final order suspending State registration authority, issued under paragraph (c) (5) or (6) of this section, will specify the grounds therefor and an effective date for the suspension. If the suspension is merely partial, the notice of suspension will specify the types of registrations which will not be recognized as valid under sec. 24(c). All final orders issued under paragraph (c) (5) or (6) will be published in the Federal Register.
(d) Termination of suspension. Suspension of a State's authority will be effective for the period specified in the notice of suspension, or if no period was specified, until such time as the Administrator is satisfied that the State can and will exercise adequate control over its program. In the latter case, the Administrator will notify the State that the suspension is terminated, or that it will be terminated on a specific date. In either case, the Administrator will publish a notice of the termination of suspension in the Federal Register.
(e) Judicial review. Any State whose authority to register pesticides has been finally suspended by the Administrator may seek judicial review of the Administrator's decision under sec. 16 of FIFRA, at any time prior to termination of the suspension. Such suspension shall remain in effect during the period of judicial review unless otherwise ordered by the Administrator.