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e-CFR data is current as of July 9, 2020

Title 40Chapter ISubchapter IPart 280Subpart H → §280.104


Title 40: Protection of Environment
PART 280—TECHNICAL STANDARDS AND CORRECTIVE ACTION REQUIREMENTS FOR OWNERS AND OPERATORS OF UNDERGROUND STORAGE TANKS (UST)
Subpart H—Financial Responsibility


§280.104   Local government bond rating test.

(a) A general purpose local government owner or operator and/or local government serving as a guarantor may satisfy the requirements of §280.93 by having a currently outstanding issue or issues of general obligation bonds of $1 million or more, excluding refunded obligations, with a Moody's rating of Aaa, Aa, A, or Baa, or a Standard & Poor's rating of AAA, AA, A, or BBB. Where a local government has multiple outstanding issues, or where a local government's bonds are rated by both Moody's and Standard and Poor's, the lowest rating must be used to determine eligibility. Bonds that are backed by credit enhancement other than municipal bond insurance may not be considered in determining the amount of applicable bonds outstanding.

(b) A local government owner or operator or local government serving as a guarantor that is not a general-purpose local government and does not have the legal authority to issue general obligation bonds may satisfy the requirements of §280.93 by having a currently outstanding issue or issues of revenue bonds of $1 million or more, excluding refunded issues, and by also having a Moody's rating of Aaa, Aa, A, or Baa, or a Standard & Poor's rating of AAA, AA, A, or BBB as the lowest rating for any rated revenue bond issued by the local government. Where bonds are rated by both Moody's and Standard & Poor's, the lower rating for each bond must be used to determine eligibility. Bonds that are backed by credit enhancement may not be considered in determining the amount of applicable bonds outstanding.

(c) The local government owner or operator and/or guarantor must maintain a copy of its bond rating published within the last 12 months by Moody's or Standard & Poor's.

(d) To demonstrate that it meets the local government bond rating test, the chief financial officer of a general purpose local government owner or operator and/or guarantor must sign a letter worded exactly as follows, except that the instructions in brackets are to be replaced by the relevant information and the brackets deleted:

Letter from Chief Financial Officer

I am the chief financial officer of [insert: name and address of local government owner or operator, or guarantor]. This letter is in support of the use of the bond rating test to demonstrate financial responsibility for [insert: “taking corrective action” and/or “compensating third parties for bodily injury and property damage”] caused by [insert: “sudden accidental releases” or “nonsudden accidental releases” or “accidental releases”] in the amount of at least [insert: dollar amount] per occurrence and [insert: dollar amount] annual aggregate arising from operating (an) underground storage tank(s).

Underground storage tanks at the following facilities are assured by this bond rating test: [List for each facility: the name and address of the facility where tanks are assured by the bond rating test].

The details of the issue date, maturity, outstanding amount, bond rating, and bond rating agency of all outstanding bond issues that are being used by [name of local government owner or operator, or guarantor] to demonstrate financial responsibility are as follows:

Issue dateMaturity dateOutstanding amountBond ratingRating agency
   [Moody's or Standard & Poor's]

The total outstanding obligation of [insert amount], excluding refunded bond issues, exceeds the minimum amount of $1 million. All outstanding general obligation bonds issued by this government that have been rated by Moody's or Standard & Poor's are rated as at least investment grade (Moody's Baa or Standard & Poor's BBB) based on the most recent ratings published within the last 12 months. Neither rating service has provided notification within the last 12 months of downgrading of bond ratings below investment grade or of withdrawal of bond rating other than for repayment of outstanding bond issues.

I hereby certify that the wording of this letter is identical to the wording specified in 40 CFR 280.104(d) as such regulations were constituted on the date shown immediately below.

[Date]

[Signature]

[Name]

[Title]

(e) To demonstrate that it meets the local government bond rating test, the chief financial officer of local government owner or operator and/or guarantor other than a general purpose government must sign a letter worded exactly as follows, except that the instructions in brackets are to be replaced by the relevant information and the brackets deleted:

Letter from Chief Financial Officer

I am the chief financial officer of [insert: name and address of local government owner or operator, or guarantor]. This letter is in support of the use of the bond rating test to demonstrate financial responsibility for [insert: “taking corrective action” and/or “compensating third parties for bodily injury and property damage”] caused by [insert: “sudden accidental releases” or “nonsudden accidental releases” or “accidental releases”] in the amount of at least [insert: dollar amount] per occurrence and [insert: dollar amount] annual aggregate arising from operating (an) underground storage tank(s). This local government is not organized to provide general governmental services and does not have the legal authority under state law or constitutional provisions to issue general obligation debt.

Underground storage tanks at the following facilities are assured by this bond rating test: [List for each facility: the name and address of the facility where tanks are assured by the bond rating test].

The details of the issue date, maturity, outstanding amount, bond rating, and bond rating agency of all outstanding revenue bond issues that are being used by [name of local government owner or operator, or guarantor] to demonstrate financial responsibility are as follows:

Issue dateMaturity dateOutstanding amountBond ratingRating agency
   [Moody's or Standard & Poor's]

The total outstanding obligation of [insert amount], excluding refunded bond issues, exceeds the minimum amount of $1 million. All outstanding revenue bonds issued by this government that have been rated by Moody's or Standard & Poor's are rated as at least investment grade (Moody's Baa or Standard & Poor's BBB) based on the most recent ratings published within the last 12 months. The revenue bonds listed are not backed by third-party credit enhancement or insured by a municipal bond insurance company. Neither rating service has provided notification within the last 12 months of downgrading of bond ratings below investment grade or of withdrawal of bond rating other than for repayment of outstanding bond issues.

I hereby certify that the wording of this letter is identical to the wording specified in 40 CFR 280.104(e) as such regulations were constituted on the date shown immediately below.

[Date]

[Signature]

[Name]

[Title]

(f) The Director of the implementing agency may require reports of financial condition at any time from the local government owner or operator, and/or local government guarantor. If the Director finds, on the basis of such reports or other information, that the local government owner or operator, and/or guarantor, no longer meets the local government bond rating test requirements of §280.104, the local government owner or operator must obtain alternative coverage within 30 days after notification of such a finding.

(g) If a local government owner or operator using the bond rating test to provide financial assurance finds that it no longer meets the bond rating test requirements, the local government owner or operator must obtain alternative coverage within 150 days of the change in status.

(h) If the local government owner or operator fails to obtain alternate assurance within 150 days of finding that it no longer meets the requirements of the bond rating test or within 30 days of notification by the Director of the implementing agency that it no longer meets the requirements of the bond rating test, the owner or operator must notify the Director of such failure within 10 days.

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