Owners and operators are strongly encouraged to audit their facilities to confirm that they are in compliance with all environmental regulations. If violations are discovered, disclosed, and corrected in accordance with EPA’s Audit Policy or the Small Business Compliance Policy described here, penalties may be mitigated up to 100%.
The EPA Audit Policy, “Incentives for Self-Policing: Discovery, Disclosure, Correction and Prevention of Violations,” has been in effect since 1995. It reflects input from industry, trade associations, state environmental programs, and public interest groups. The Audit Policy is designed to provide incentives for regulated entities to come into compliance with the federal environmental laws & regulations. These incentives are for regulated entities that voluntarily discover, promptly disclose and expeditiously correct noncompliance, making formal EPA investigations and enforcement actions unnecessary.
The Small Business Compliance Policy (PDF) promotes environmental compliance among small businesses (those with 100 or fewer employees) by providing incentives to discover and correct environmental problems. EPA will eliminate or significantly reduce penalties for small businesses that voluntarily discover violations of environmental law and promptly disclose and correct them. For more information, go to www.epa.gov/compliance/incentives/smallbusiness/index.html