The Legislature finds that:
There are numerous landfills throughout the state that must be closed because they cannot be operated in an environmentally sound manner;
The permittees of many of the landfills that will be closing do not have the financial resources to close their landfills in a manner that is timely and environmentally sound;
As long as these landfills remain open, the threat of continuing harm to the environment and the health and safety of the citizens of West Virginia exists, and the cost to remediate their adverse effects will continue to grow;
The untimely and disorderly closure of these landfills represents a significant threat to the health and safety of the people of West Virginia and its environment; and
It is in the best interests of all the citizens of this state to provide a mechanism to assist the permittees of these landfills in properly closing them.
Therefore, it is the purpose of this article to provide an assistance program that will be available to permittees of landfills that will facilitate the closure of these landfills in a timely and environmentally sound manner.