75-2-212. Variances -- renewals -- filing fees. (1) A person who owns or is in control of a plant, building, structure, process, or equipment may apply to the department for an exemption or partial exemption from rules governing the quality, nature, duration, or extent of emissions of air pollutants. The application must be accompanied by information and data that the department may require. The department may grant an exemption or partial exemption if it finds that:
(a) the emissions occurring or proposed to occur do not constitute a danger to public health or safety; and
(b) compliance with the rules from which an exemption is sought would produce hardship without equal or greater benefits to the public.
(2) An exemption or partial exemption may not be granted pursuant to this section except after public hearing on due notice and until the department has considered the relative interests of the applicant, other owners or property likely to be affected by the emissions, and the general public.
(3) The exemption or partial exemption may be renewed if a complaint is not made to the department because of it or if, after the complaint has been made and duly considered at a public hearing held by the department on due notice, the department finds that renewal is justified. A renewal may not be granted except on application. An application must be made at least 60 days before the expiration of the exemption or partial exemption. Immediately before application for renewal, the applicant shall give public notice of the application in accordance with rules of the department. A renewal pursuant to this subsection must be on the same grounds and subject to the same limitations and requirements as provided in subsection (1).
(4) An exemption, partial exemption, or renewal is not a right of the applicant or holder but may be granted at the discretion of the department. However, a person adversely affected by an exemption, partial exemption, or renewal granted by the department may obtain judicial review as provided by 75-2-411.
(5) This section and an exemption, partial exemption, or renewal granted pursuant to this section may not be construed to prevent or limit the application of the emergency provisions and procedures of 75-2-402 to a person or the person's property.
(6) A person who owns or is in control of a plant, building, structure, process, or equipment, which are called facilities, who applies to the department for an exemption or partial exemption or a renewal of an exemption or partial exemption from a rule governing the quality, nature, duration, or extent of emissions of air pollutants shall submit with the application for variance a sum of not less than $500 or 2% of the cost of the equipment to bring the facility into compliance with the rule for which a variance is sought, whichever is greater, but not to exceed $80,000. The department shall prepare a statement of actual costs, and funds in excess of this must be returned to the applicant. The person requesting the variance shall describe the facility in sufficient detail, with accompanying estimates of cost and verifying materials, to permit the department to determine with reasonable accuracy the sum of the fee. For a renewal of an exemption or partial exemption, if a public hearing, environmental impact statement, or appreciable investigation by the department is not necessary, the minimum filing fee applies or the fee may be waived by the department. The filing fee must be deposited in the state special revenue fund provided for in 17-2-102. It is the intent of the legislature that the revenue derived from the filing fees must be used by the department to:
(a) compile the information required for rendering a decision on the request;
(b) compile the information necessary for any environmental impact statements;
(c) offset the costs of a public hearing, printing, or mailing; and
(d) carry out its other responsibilities under this chapter.