The complexity of environmental law often presents uncertainty in its prospective application. The public and regulated entities have the option, under Section 204 of the State Administrative Procedures Act and 6 NYCRR Part 619 to petition General Counsel of DEC for a ruling on the applicability of any regulation or statute which the Department enforces to any persons, property or state of facts, and, whether any action taken by the Department should be taken pursuant to a regulation. In addition, a person subject to State statute or rule and a similar Federal requirement may petition for a ruling as to whether compliance with the Federal Requirement can be considered to be compliance with State requirement. Further, in the context of an administrative hearing, a legal issue involving no factual dispute which is a matter of first impression or precedential may be referred to the General Counsel for a Declaratory Ruling either by the Administrative Law Judge or upon motion by a party to the proceeding.
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