H.B. 1239
By: Jackson
Committee Report (Unamended)


The 74th Legislature established a Voluntary Cleanup Program at the TNRCC.
Under the program, a person may clean up a contaminated site with the
approval and oversight of the TNRCC.  When the site has been remediated to
the appropriate cleanup level, the site owner is provided with a
certificate of completion, and future landowners receive a release from
state liability.  The program encourages economic development of
remediated property by ensuring that future landowners are not held
responsible for contamination caused by previous owners. The program needs
a few changes to clarify issues that have caused confusion for program


HB 1239 clarifies the intent of the voluntary cleanup program by revising
the definition of a responsible party, specifying the time period allowed
for resubmittal of an application, and allowing the expenditure of federal
funds for a brownfield program. 


It is the committee's opinion that this bill does not expressly grant any
additional rulemaking authority to a state officer, department, agency or


SECTION 1.  Amends Section 361.133 (b) and (c), Health and Safety Code, to
allow the TNRCC to deposit into the Hazardous Waste Remediation Fee Fund
federal grant funds received to implement or administer a federal
brownfield program, and to make such a program an allowable expense from
that Fund. 

SECTION 2.  Amends Section 361.605(b), Health and Safety Code, to allow an
application to the voluntary cleanup program to be resubmitted once within
45 days after TNRCC rejects the application, without paying an additional
application fee. 

SECTION 3.  Amends Section 361.609, Health and Safety Code, as follows:
 Section 361.609(b) is amended to stipulate that the name of the owner
included in the application is the site owner at the time of the
application was filed. 
 Section 361.609 (c) Deletes the requirement that the executive director
file a copy of the certificate of completion in the real property records. 
 Section 361.609(d) is renumbered to reflect the removal of Subsection (c).

SECTION 4.  Amends Section 361.610, Health and Safety Code as follows:
 361.610(a) States that a person who is not a responsible party does not
become a responsible party solely by signing the application. 
 361.610(b) Stipulates that a person who is not a responsible party is
released, on issuance of the certificate, from liability to the state. 
 361.610(c) Stipulates that the release from liability does not apply to a
person who acquires a certificate of completion by fraud,
misrepresentation, or knowing failure to disclose material information or
knows at the time the person who acquires an interest in the property for
which a  certificate was acquired in a fraudulent manner.  This section
also deletes the provision for release from liability to a lender who
makes a loan secured by that property after the date of issuance of the

SECTION 5.  Effective date: September 1, 1997.  Allows a person whose
application was rejected before September 1, 1997 to resubmit the
application once by October 15, 1997 without a fee. 

SECTION 6.  Emergency clause.