HWTR Education Fee

My Watershed

NOTICE: We are experiencing a very high volume of calls at this time. We are answering the calls as quickly as possible, in the order received. We apologize for the inconvenience and appreciate your patience.

Payment is due
upon receipt

Hazardous Waste Generation Fee

Why am I seeing this bill now when I have been in the same business for years?  Answer...

You may be seeing this bill for the first time because of changes to the business classification code (NAICS code). The Department of Revenue (Revenue) has converted from the 2007 NAICS code to the 2012 NAICS code. The federal government is responsible for the code and updates it every five years. There were many changes to the code that required Revenue to review the codes to ensure the relevance, accuracy, and timeliness of the classification. Many businesses had their classification codes updated during this review.Hide this content.

What is the Hazardous Generation Fee?  Answer...

The Washington State Legislature established the Hazardous Waste Generation Fee in 1990 (Revised Code of Washington Chapter 70.95E). Businesses that generate hazardous waste in Washington must pay the fee. The amount of the fee changes with inflation—currently it's $49.00. Hide this content.

What is the difference between dangerous waste and hazardous waste? Answer...

For the purpose of the fee, dangerous waste and hazardous waste mean the same thing. Hazardous waste is a federal term for dangerous waste. Hide this content.

Why was my business billed this fee? Answer...

Ecology included your business in this mailing because your business is assigned a North American Industry Classification System (NAICS) code that typically generates dangerous waste. See your NAICS code on the attached billing invoice.

You must pay the Generation Fee if your business meets the following criteria:

Your business generated dangerous waste in 2015


The value of all your products, gross proceeds of sales, or gross income exceeded $12,000 in 2015


Your business has an active RCRA Site ID number and reported disposing of dangerous waste in 2015.Hide this content.

Can I pay this fee with my credit card or ACH?  Answer...

No, Ecology is unable to receive electronic payments at this time. Only check or money order will be accepted.Hide this content.

What will happen if I ignore this bill? Answer...

If you don't pay this bill by June 30, 2016 it will begin accruing interest charges at a rate of 1% per month. It will continue to do so until paid in full. If the bill remains unpaid, we must forward the bill to a collections agency. This will add an additional collection-related cost to settle the account. Collections charges could be up to 50% of the original fee, as allowed in RCW19.16.500(1)(b). Interest due will also continue to grow until the fee is paid.Hide this content.

What are some examples of dangerous waste? Answer...

For an extensive list please refer to the Dangerous Waste Regulations. Examples include, but aren't limited to:

  • Contaminated sandblasting grit, waste paints, solvents (including parts washer solvents), paint booth filters, thinners, finishes, aerosol cans, or adhesives.
  • Propane, spillage of pumped fuel, used oil, anti-freeze, transmission fluid, coolants, refrigerants, brake fluid, or hydraulic fluid, even if it has been recycled. This includes rags or towels used to clean or wipe up spillage or excess.
  • X-ray, photo processing chemicals, inkjet, toner, screen printing, plate activator & stabilizer.
  • Dental amalgam, even if captured in an amalgam separator.
  • Pharmaceuticals- Prescription or over the counter medication.
  • Pesticides, fertilizers, herbicides, or acids.
  • Waste water from detailing or car washing.
  • Torch down roofing.
  • Solvents and dry cleaning chemicals. This includes the newer hydrocarbon dry cleaning solutions.
  • Acetylene or other gases used in welding.
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How does Ecology use the funds collected from the fee? Answer...

We use the funds we collect to help businesses manage their waste safely. We provide technical assistance to businesses to help them:

Ecology’s toxics reduction specialists offer technical assistance to anyone requesting help. These experts can explain the Dangerous Waste Regulations and help with pollution prevention and effective waste management. Many businesses working closely with our staff have reduced or eliminated the waste they generate.Hide this content.

Do I have to pay the fee if I don’t generate dangerous waste? Answer...

No, if your business doesn't generate dangerous waste you don't have to pay this fee. Businesses that don't generate any dangerous waste can apply for a waiver or exemption from the fee, depending on their situation.

  • You can apply for a waiver if your business didn't generate any dangerous waste in the previous calendar year but will generate dangerous waste in the future. This waiver is good for one year. You will be billed again next year.
  • You can apply for an exemption if your business didn't generate any dangerous waste in the previous calendar year and won't generate any dangerous waste in the future. If an exemption is granted, you will not have to pay the fee and you will not be billed again unless your business generates dangerous waste or your Washington State tax registration number changes with the Department of Revenue.
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How do I apply for a waiver or exemption? Answer...

You can apply for the waiver or exemption online at:
http://www.ecy.wa.gov/programs/hwtr/genfees/waiver.html. We will respond within a few business days by email. Please respond to this billing before the due date.Hide this content.

What rules and laws govern the Hazardous Waste Generation Fee? Answer...

WAC 173-305 Hazardous Waste Fees regulation (section 110)

WAC 173-303 Dangerous Waste regulations

RCW 70.95E Hazardous Waste Fees (section 040)

RCW 43.17 Administrative Departments and Agencies - General Provisions (section 240)

RCW 19.16 Collection Agencies (section 500(1)(b))
http://apps.leg.wa.gov/RCW/default.aspx?cite=19.16.500Hide this content.

Do you have additional resources about dangerous waste that can help my business? Answer...

We recommend starting with Shoptalk, an Ecology publication full of useful articles for dangerous waste generators. Visit www.ecy.wa.gov/programs/hwtr/shoptalkonline/index.html to see the latest issue. Hide this content.

What if I have additional questions? Answer...

Email or call our staff for answers to your additional questions. Hide this content.

Do you need an interpreter?
Please call 1-866-211-2955 option 1. We have interpreter services available for many languages.