New environmental inspection initiative from the DEQ
April 19, 2012
Passing an inspection by a regulatory agency is a necessary, but sometimes stressful, fact of life for many business operators. The Michigan Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) is working to make the inspection process a positive one by giving companies the tools they need to understand and pass an inspection.
A tri-fold brochure entitled “Environmental Inspections: Rights and Responsibilities” and a guide entitled “What to Expect from an Environmental Compliance Inspection” are now available online at www.michigan.gov/deq.
The downloadable documents explain the four stages of an inspection and address many common issues to help take the guesswork out of the process. They outline the DEQ’s inspection goals and statutory obligations, as well as the rights and duties of operators, with information on sampling, review of records, and right-of-entry laws.
DEQ inspectors are handing-out the brochure at the beginning of the inspection process, but anyone can view and download them online by going to the DEQ home page, selecting “About the DEQ,” and choosing the “DEQ Inspections” link.
As part of the department’s continued effort to improve customer service, the DEQ inspectors will also encourage operators to take a survey after an inspection. The survey addresses the quality of the inspection and the professionalism of the inspector. It is designed to offer businesses an opportunity to provide direct feedback on the inspection process and help the agency find ways to improve.
Online surveys for each of the DEQ’s regulatory divisions and offices are available by going to www.michigan.gov/deqsurveys. Businesses are encouraged to complete the appropriate 12-question survey immediately following inspection. Comments are forwarded to inspection program managers for review and follow up with their staff.
The DEQ understands that no one likes being inspected, but this important legal requirement is part of operating most businesses, and operators who understand their rights and obligations in the process find that DEQ inspectors can be a helpful partner to operating an environmentally-clean business.