Printreg Archive
Fact Sheet on Y2K Upset Legislation


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From: gjonesprinting@aol.com
Date: Wed Aug 25 1999 - 20:59:28 CDT


To All:

I wanted to pass along a fact sheet that was forwarded to me. I thought it
would be of interest.

Gary Jones
Graphic Arts Technical Foundation

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     Federal Y2K Act Environmental Enforcement Fact Sheet
     Y2K Upset Defense (section 4(g)) (15 U.S.C. 6603)
     Nature of Relief
     
     Section 4(g) provides a defense to penalties in an action brought by a
     government entity (federal, state, or local) for noncompliance with a
     federally enforceable monitoring or reporting requirement. The
     government's right to seek injunctive relief is expressly preserved.
     Scope of Coverage
     Definition of "Y2K Upset"
     
     A "Y2K upset" is an "exceptional temporary noncompliance" with a
     federally enforceable monitoring or reporting requirement "directly
     related" to a Y2K failure (separately defined) beyond the regulated
     entity's "reasonable control."
     
     The noncompliance may last up to 15 days unless extended by regulatory
     authority.
     Covered Entities
     
     The defense expressly applies to state or local governments. There is
     no other limitation on qualifying entities.
     Qualifying Criteria
     
     No Harm: The upset caused no actual or imminent harm (noncompliance
     may not "constitut[e] or . . . creat[e] an imminent threat to public
     health, safety, or the environment").
     
     Substantive Compliance: The entity must be in compliance with the
     underlying federally enforceable requirement (to which the monitoring
     or reporting requirement relates).
     
     No Operating/Maintenance Error: The entity is disqualified if
     noncompliance is due to operational error or negligence, or lack of
     "reasonable" preventive maintenance.
     
     Entity's Demonstration
     
     Good Faith: The entity "previously made a reasonable good faith effort
     to anticipate, prevent, and effectively remediate a potential Y2K
     failure."
     
     Y2K Failure: The noncompliance "occurred as a result of a Y2K failure
     or other emergency directly related to a Y2K failure."
     
     Noncompliance Unavoidable and Critically Necessary: The noncompliance
     was (1) "unavoidable in the face of an emergency directly related to a
     Y2K failure" and (2) "was necessary to prevent the disruption of
     critical functions or services that could result in harm to life or
     property."
     
     Correction and Reporting: The entity began "immediate actions to
     correct" the noncompliance (maximum duration is 15 days), and
     submitted notice of the upset to the appropriate regulatory agency
     within 72 hours of becoming aware of the upset.
     Sunrise and Sunset Dates
     
     The defense is available in actions brought after January 1, 1999, for
     upsets occurring through June 30, 2000.
     CIVIL PENALTY WAIVER FOR FIRST-TIME VIOLATIONS OF SMALL BUSINESS
     CONCERNS (SECTION 18) (15 U.S.C. 6617)
     
     Nature of Relief
     
     Section 18 provides a waiver of civil money penalties for "first-time"
     violations of any federally enforceable regulation (the same
     regulation must not have been violated by the small business concern
     within the preceding 3 years) in any federal action.
     Scope of Coverage
     Covered Entities
     
     The waiver is available to unincorporated businesses, partnerships,
     corporations, associations, or organizations, with fewer than 50
     full-time employees.
     Qualifying Criteria
     
     No Harm: The violation caused no actual or imminent harm
     (noncompliance may not "constitut[e] or creat[e] an imminent threat to
     public health, safety, or the environment").
     
     Timely Noncompliance Correction: The small business concern must
     correct the violation "not later than 1 month after initial
     notification to the agency."
     
     Government Findings (Based on Small Business Demonstration)
     Good Faith: The small business "previously made a reasonable good
     faith effort to anticipate, prevent, and effectively remediate a
     potential Y2K failure."
     
     Y2K Failure: The violation must result from a Y2K failure of the small
     business concern or other entity, which "significantly affected" the
     concern's ability to comply.
     
     Violation Unavoidable or Critically Necessary: The violation was (1)
     "unavoidable in the face of a Y2K failure" or (2) "occurred as a
     result of efforts to prevent the disruption of critical functions or
     services that could result in harm to life or property."
     
     Correction and Reporting: The small business "initiated reasonable and
     prompt measures to correct the violation" (maximum duration is 1
     month), and submitted notice of the violation to the appropriate
     governmental agency within 5 business days from the time it became
     aware of the violation.
     Sunrise and Sunset Dates
     
     The waiver is available in actions brought after January 1, 1999, for
     first-time violations caused by a Y2K failure occurring through
     December 31, 2000.
 


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