A. An owner who has been granted a variance by the Secretary before February 10, 1997 may continue to operate under that variance.
B. An owner may request a variance from a requirement of this chapter by submitting a written application that:
(1) Contains specific details of the alternative procedure proposed by the owner;
(2) Specifies the applicable regulation to which the variance pertains;
(3) Explains the reason for the request;
(4) Provides the name and address of the owner;
(5) Provides the name and location of the facility; and
(6) Demonstrates that the alternative procedure proposed:
(a) Meets or produces the intended effect of the regulation for which the variance is requested, and
(b) Maintains the protection of the health and safety of the individuals using the facility at or above the level required by the regulation for which the variance is requested.
C. Upon consideration of an application for a variance, the Secretary may grant the request for a variance if the:
(1) Applicant has submitted an application in accordance with the provisions of §B of this regulation;
(2) Applicant has complied with all other applicable provisions of this chapter;
(3) Application is justified due to physical limitation of the existing layout of the facility; and
(4) Secretary determines that the alternative procedure proposed by the applicant:
(a) Meets or produces the intended effect of the regulation, and
(b) Maintains the protection of the health and safety of the individuals using the facility at or above the level required by the regulation at issue.
D. The Secretary shall grant or deny an application for a variance in writing and shall mail the decision to the applicant within 60 days of the date the application for a variance is received by the Department.
E. If the determination of the Secretary is to deny a variance request that has been made in compliance with the provisions of §B of this regulation, the applicant may file an appeal of the denial in accordance with State Government Article, Title 10, Subtitle 2, Annotated Code of Maryland, and shall contact the Secretary within 10 days of receipt of the denial to preserve a right to a hearing.