By Junell                                             H.B. No. 2372
       74R5336 SMH-D
                                 A BILL TO BE ENTITLED
    1-1                                AN ACT
    1-2  relating to the safety regulation of aggregate quarries and pits.
    1-4        SECTION 1.  Section 133.003(27), Natural Resources Code, is
    1-5  amended to read as follows:
    1-6              (27)  "Unacceptable unsafe location" means a condition
    1-7  in which:
    1-8                    (A)  <where> the edge of a pit is located within
    1-9  200 feet of the center of a public roadway intersection; and
   1-10                    (B)  <in a manner which,> in the judgment of the
   1-11  commission:
   1-12                          (i) <(A)>  the pit presents a significant
   1-13  risk of harm to public motorists by reason of the proximity of the
   1-14  pit to the roadway intersection; and<,>
   1-15                          (ii)  there is not a <(B)  has no>
   1-16  naturally occurring or artificially constructed barrier or berm
   1-17  between the road and pit that would likely prevent a motor vehicle
   1-18  from accidentally entering the pit as the result of a motor vehicle
   1-19  collision at or near the intersection<; or which,>
   1-20                    <(C)  in the opinion of the commission, is also
   1-21  at any other location constituting a substantial dangerous risk to
   1-22  the driving public, which condition can be rectified by the
   1-23  placement of berms, barriers, guardrails, or other devices as
   1-24  prescribed by this code>.
    2-1        SECTION 2.  Section 133.011, Natural Resources Code, is
    2-2  amended to read as follows:
    2-3        Sec. 133.011.  General Authority of the Commission.  To
    2-4  accomplish the limited purposes of this chapter, the commission
    2-5  may:
    2-6              (1)  with proper notice to all parties affected, adopt
    2-7  rules and regulations consistent with the provisions of this
    2-8  chapter and issue orders necessary to implement and enforce this
    2-9  chapter;
   2-10              (2)  conduct research necessary for the discharge of
   2-11  its duties under this chapter;
   2-12              (3)  collect and make available to the public
   2-13  information relating to the inventory and classification of
   2-14  quarries, including maps and other technical data;
   2-15              (4)  apply for, accept, receive, and administer grants,
   2-16  gifts, loans, or other funds from any source; and
   2-17              (5)  hold public hearings, take written sworn
   2-18  testimony, hear witnesses upon oath, and consider reports in regard
   2-19  to the classifications of pits that are in <within the definitions
   2-20  of hazardous proximity to a public road and> unacceptable unsafe
   2-21  locations <location>, issuing rules and orders in relation thereto.
   2-22        SECTION 3.  Section 133.012(a), Natural Resources Code, is
   2-23  amended to read as follows:
   2-24        (a)  The commission shall inventory, classify, and maintain a
   2-25  log according to the degree of hazard, proximity to public roads,
   2-26  age, and current use of all existing, inactive, or abandoned
   2-27  quarries that have <a pit perimeter that is in hazardous proximity
    3-1  to a public road, and those> pits that are in <an> unacceptable
    3-2  unsafe locations <location>.
    3-3        SECTION 4.  Sections 133.041(a) and (b), Natural Resources
    3-4  Code, are amended to read as follows:
    3-5        (a)  A person responsible for an active pit must construct a
    3-6  barrier or other device required by this code between a public road
    3-7  adjoining the site and a pit, provided the pit is in an
    3-8  unacceptable unsafe location <hazardous proximity to the public
    3-9  road>.
   3-10        (b)  A person responsible for an abandoned or inactive pit
   3-11  must construct a barrier or other device required by this code
   3-12  between a public road adjoining the site and the pit, provided that
   3-13  the pit is in <hazardous proximity to a public road and in> an
   3-14  unacceptable unsafe location.  The commission may grant a waiver
   3-15  from the barrier requirement if the person responsible for the
   3-16  abandoned or inactive pit submits an application to the commission
   3-17  showing that:
   3-18              (1)  a governmental entity obtained a right-of-way and
   3-19  constructed a public road within 200 feet of the abandoned or
   3-20  inactive pit before August 26, 1991; and
   3-21              (2)  the pit has remained abandoned or inactive since
   3-22  the road was constructed.
   3-23        SECTION 5.  Sections 133.044(b) and (c), Natural Resources
   3-24  Code, are amended to read as follows:
   3-25        (b)  From and after November 1, 1991, no person responsible
   3-26  may open a new pit on a site for the extraction of aggregates in
   3-27  this state wherein the pit perimeter is in an unacceptable unsafe
    4-1  location <hazardous proximity to a public road> without first
    4-2  filing a quarry safety plan detailing how the applicant intends to
    4-3  comply with the safety provisions of this code in the opening and
    4-4  closing of the pit.
    4-5        (c)  The quarry safety plan must:
    4-6              (1)  set out the information required in Section
    4-7  133.046 et seq. of this code; <and>
    4-8              (2)  be filed by the applicant at least 60 days prior
    4-9  to the opening of the pit; <and>
   4-10              (3)  contain a statement as to the yearly progress of
   4-11  the encroachment, if any, of the pit perimeter <within the
   4-12  hazardous proximity to a public road, if any,> and the type of berm
   4-13  or barrier or other device required by this code that will be
   4-14  erected; <and>
   4-15              (4)  be in writing, certified and sworn to the
   4-16  applicant; and
   4-17              (5)  contain any other information relating to safety
   4-18  matters as the commission by rule or regulation deems essential to
   4-19  the implementation of this code.
   4-20        SECTION 6.  Section 133.045, Natural Resources Code, is
   4-21  amended to read as follows:
   4-22        Sec. 133.045.  Safety Certificate Required.  (a)  A safety
   4-23  certificate is required for an active, inactive, or abandoned
   4-24  quarry or pit that is located in <hazardous proximity to a public
   4-25  road or is in> an unacceptable unsafe location, excluding an
   4-26  inactive or abandoned quarry or pit that receives a written waiver
   4-27  from the commission.
    5-1        (b)  From and after November 1, 1991, unless a person
    5-2  responsible for a quarry or pit has obtained from the commission a
    5-3  certificate that a quarry or pit complies with this subchapter and
    5-4  rules or orders adopted under this subchapter, and subject to
    5-5  Subsection (d) <(c)> of this section, the person responsible may
    5-6  not:
    5-7              (1)  open a new pit in <hazardous proximity to a public
    5-8  road; and>
    5-9              <(2)  locate a pit in an area wherein it is in> an
   5-10  unacceptable unsafe location; or
   5-11              (2) <(3)>  reopen, operate, or abandon a quarry or pit
   5-12  that is in <hazardous proximity to a public road and in> an
   5-13  unacceptable unsafe location.
   5-14        (c)  Notwithstanding Subsection (b)(2),<; and>
   5-15              <(4)  provided, however, that> the person responsible
   5-16  must have received a notice from the commission that the quarry or
   5-17  pit requires the operator to obtain a safety certificate<,> before
   5-18  that person is prohibited from operating or maintaining the quarry
   5-19  or pit without a safety certificate.
   5-20        (d) <(c)>  Any person responsible who, on November 1, 1991,
   5-21  is utilizing a portion of a site for quarrying operations,
   5-22  including the stockpiling, sale, or processing of aggregates or a
   5-23  combination thereof, or who has a current, valid, or outstanding
   5-24  agreement or legal right to develop, utilize, or quarry the
   5-25  property, shall be responsible for obtaining a safety certificate
   5-26  limited to that specific pit area he is using or excavating or
   5-27  intends to use or excavate.
    6-1        (e) <(d)>  A person responsible for a quarry or pit may
    6-2  operate the pit during a period that is described by Subsection (a)
    6-3  or (c) of Section 133.052 of this code.
    6-4        (f) <(e)>  In the event a quarry or pit <previously not
    6-5  within the proscribed distance in the definition of "in hazardous
    6-6  proximity to a public road" and> not initially within the purview
    6-7  of "unacceptable unsafe location" later becomes subject to
    6-8  regulation as the result of an expansion or relocation of an
    6-9  existing public road or construction of a new public road, the
   6-10  person or entity responsible for the expansion or relocation of the
   6-11  existing public road or construction of a new public road shall be
   6-12  liable to report the same to the commission within 90 days of the
   6-13  date the expansion, relocation, or construction is finally
   6-14  accomplished.
   6-15        (g) <(f)>  The commission shall provide such rules and
   6-16  regulations to require the person or entity responsible for the
   6-17  expansion or relocation to erect berms or barriers.
   6-18        (h) <(g)>  For the purposes of this subsection, the person or
   6-19  entity responsible for the erection of berms or barriers is that
   6-20  person or entity having the original and initial legal authority
   6-21  and responsibility for the initiation and contracting of the
   6-22  expansion or relocation.
   6-23        SECTION 7.  Section 133.046(b), Natural Resources Code, is
   6-24  amended to read as follows:
   6-25        (b)  An application for a safety certificate must contain not
   6-26  more than:
   6-27              (1)  the name, address, and telephone number of the
    7-1  person responsible for the quarry or pit;
    7-2              (2)  the name, address, and telephone number of the
    7-3  owner or owners if different from the person responsible for the
    7-4  quarry or pit;
    7-5              (3)  the type of quarrying activities, if any,
    7-6  occurring on the site;
    7-7              (4)  a brief description of the site, including the
    7-8  acreage outside and inside the pit;
    7-9              (5)  the distance of each pit perimeter from the
   7-10  nearest roadway edge of each public road that the site adjoins and
   7-11  the center of the nearest intersection of any public or private
   7-12  road or driveway;
   7-13              (6)  the depth in feet, below the top of the pit
   7-14  highwall located between the pit and the roadway, of the deepest
   7-15  excavation in the pit;
   7-16              (7)  a description of and a construction plan for any
   7-17  barrier or other device allowed in this code to be constructed,
   7-18  specifying the material to be used and the expected date of
   7-19  completion; and
   7-20              (8)  any other information or condition that, in the
   7-21  opinion of the operator or owner, constitutes an unacceptable
   7-22  unsafe location, as defined or required by this Act that is
   7-23  absolutely essential to the purposes of this Act.
   7-24        SECTION 8.  Section 133.047(b), Natural Resources Code, is
   7-25  amended to read as follows:
   7-26        (b)  The commission shall set the fee in an amount reasonably
   7-27  necessary to cover the commission's cost of carrying out this
    8-1  chapter, but not more than $25<:>
    8-2              <(1)  $500> for an active, inactive, or abandoned
    8-3  aggregate quarry or pit<;>
    8-4              <(2)  $500 for an inactive or abandoned aggregate
    8-5  quarry or pit unless the responsible party is a governmental entity
    8-6  in which case the fee shall be no more than $350>.
    8-7        SECTION 9.  Section 133.051(a), Natural Resources Code, is
    8-8  amended to read as follows:
    8-9        (a)  A person holding a safety certificate has the full
   8-10  right, power, and authority to transfer the certificate upon the
   8-11  sale, lease, or other transfer of title to the site, provided the
   8-12  new owner, operator, lessor or lessee, or party in interest files a
   8-13  written affidavit that:
   8-14              (1)  all barriers between a pit and the nearest roadway
   8-15  edge of any public road comply with this subchapter, and rules and
   8-16  orders adopted by this subchapter; and
   8-17              (2)  there will be no change, on or after the day of
   8-18  the transfer of title or operation, in:
   8-19                    (A)  the condition or location of a barrier; and
   8-20                    (B)  the distance of a pit perimeter from:
   8-21                          (i)  the nearest public road; and
   8-22                          (ii)  the center of the nearest
   8-23  intersection of a public road and a private road or driveway.
   8-24        SECTION 10.  Section 133.054(a), Natural Resources Code, is
   8-25  amended to read as follows:
   8-26        (a)  The responsible party who plans or intends to cease
   8-27  active operations in a quarry or pit subject to the provisions of
    9-1  this code shall, 60 days prior to cessation of operations, notify
    9-2  the commission of its intent and submit any additional plans the
    9-3  operator determines necessary to protect the public good and
    9-4  welfare after the cessation of operations.  The commission may
    9-5  charge a fee for the actual costs of processing the notice, which
    9-6  fee shall not exceed $25 <$500>.
    9-7        SECTION 11.  Section 133.003(13), Natural Resources Code, is
    9-8  repealed.
    9-9        SECTION 12.  (a)  The change in law made by Section 8 of this
   9-10  Act applies only to an application filed on or after the effective
   9-11  date of this Act.  An application filed before the effective date
   9-12  of this Act is covered by the law in effect when the application
   9-13  was filed, and the former law is continued in effect for that
   9-14  purpose.
   9-15        (b)  The change in law made by Section 10 of this Act applies
   9-16  only to a notice filed on or after the effective date of this Act.
   9-17  A notice filed before the effective date of this Act is covered by
   9-18  the law in effect when the notice was filed, and the former law is
   9-19  continued in effect for that purpose.
   9-20        SECTION 13.  The importance of this legislation and the
   9-21  crowded condition of the calendars in both houses create an
   9-22  emergency and an imperative public necessity that the
   9-23  constitutional rule requiring bills to be read on three several
   9-24  days in each house be suspended, and this rule is hereby suspended,
   9-25  and that this Act take effect and be in force from and after its
   9-26  passage, and it is so enacted.