Maine Revised Statutes

§561. Findings; purpose

The Legislature finds that significant quantities of oil are being stored in aboveground and underground storage facilities; that leaks and unlicensed discharges from these facilities pose a significant threat to the quality of the waters of the State, including the ground water resources; that protection of the quality of these waters is of the highest importance; and that their protection requires proper design and installation of new and replacement underground oil storage facilities and aboveground oil storage facilities, as well as monitoring, maintenance and operating procedures for existing, new and replacement facilities. [2009, c. 121, §9 (AMD).]

The Legislature intends by the enactment of this subchapter to exercise the police power of the State through the department by conferring upon the department the power to deal with the hazards and threats of danger and damage posed by the storage and handling of oil and related activities; to require the prompt containment and removal of pollution occasioned thereby; to provide procedures whereby persons suffering damage from these occurrences may be promptly made whole; to establish a fund to provide for the investigation, mitigation and removal of discharges or threats of discharge of oil from storage facilities, including the restoration of contaminated water supplies; and to guarantee the prompt payment of reasonable damage claims resulting therefrom. [2009, c. 121, §9 (AMD).]

The Legislature further finds that preservation of the ground water resources and of the public uses referred to in this subchapter is of grave public interest and concern to the State in promoting its general welfare, preventing disease, promoting health and providing for the public safety and that the State's interest in this preservation outweighs any burdens of absolute liability imposed by the Legislature in this subchapter upon those engaged in the storage of oil, petroleum products and their by-products. [2009, c. 121, §9 (AMD).]

1985, c. 496, §A14 (NEW). 1989, c. 890, §§A40,B129 (AMD). 1995, c. 399, §5 (AMD). 1995, c. 399, §21 (AFF). 2009, c. 121, §9 (AMD).