Disposal of Nuisance or Abandoned Buildings: Compliance Resources
Small counties and municipalities may be able to dispose of nuisance or abandoned buildings under a permit by rule (PBR) if specific conditions are met. You can find the complete rule at 30 Texas Administrative Code (TAC) 330, Subchapter A (330.7(i)).
Note: Current rules state the population limit of 10,000 or less. During the last legislative session, the population limit was increased to 12,000 or less. Rules will be updated in the near future.
- The county or municipality has a population of 12,000 people or less.
- The disposal location receives 25 inches average annual precipitation or less.
- The disposal occurs on land that is owned or controlled by the municipality or county.
- The buildings were acquired by the county or municipality by means of bankruptcy, tax delinquency or condemnation.
- The previous owners of acquired properties are not financially capable of paying costs of transportation and disposal of the demolition waste at a permitted landfill.
How to Apply
- Complete the Application Form (TCEQ-20666).
- Complete Core Data Form(s) (TCEQ-10400) for Permittee and Property Owner (if different).
- Provide a city or county roadway map with site shown and labeled, a facility layout map, property ownership or lease information, and rainfall data (if demonstration is required).
- Submit an original and one copy of the signed application, all attachments, and one or more TCEQ Core Data Form(s) to Texas Commission on Environmental Quality, Municipal Solid Waste Permits Section, MC 124, P.O. Box 13087, Austin, TX 78711-3087.
- Send one copy of all the documents to your local TCEQ regional office.
- Wait for acknowledgement before you construct or dispose of any waste.
Questions and Answers
- Where can I find rules on disposal of nuisance and abandoned buildings and who may qualify for this Permit by Rule (PBR)?
Rules are located in 30 Texas Administrative Code (TAC), Subsection 330.7(i). Qualifications for obtaining this PBR are specified in the rule and described on the application form. Note: Current rules state the population limit of 10,000 or less. During the last legislative session, the population limit was increased to 12,000 or less. Rules will be updated in the near future.
- Will the permit by rule expire?
Yes. The term of this permit by rule is five years but you may renew it by submitting a new application form. There is no limit to the number of renewals.
- Is there a fee for claiming this permit by rule?
No. Also, waste that is disposed under this authorization is not subject to the fee requirements of Chapter 330, Subchapter P (Fees and Reporting).
- Where can disposal sites be located? Is on-site disposal allowed?
The disposal location must be property that is owned or controlled by the city or county. If the demolition location is large enough to provide a 50-foot buffer zone (meaning that no waste could be stored, processed, or disposed of within 50 feet of the property boundary) and large enough to address any applicable utility line and pipeline easement requirements, the site could be used for on-site disposal. Note that future development over the disposal site would have to comply with requirements of Chapter 330, Subchapter T (Use of Land Over Closed Municipal Solid Waste Landfills).
- Is it possible to locate the disposal site at our closed landfill?
Yes. And, if the landfill was certified as arid-exempt, no further demonstration of average annual rainfall is required. If the permit for the closed facility has not been revoked, its permit conditions would still apply. Disturbance of previously disposed waste or final cover is not allowed.
- Can a county and city share the same disposal site?
No. An eligible applicant (a county or municipality) may utilize the PBR to dispose of abandoned and nuisance buildings that it has acquired through bankruptcy, tax delinquency, or condemnations. A permittee could not dispose of these materials from a different governing body.
- How do we prove that we are in an arid area of the state which receives 25 inches or less precipitation?
First, use the application form. It provides a map that illustrates the areas that are immediately eligible. If the facility is not in the eligible area but the proposed disposal location was certified as arid-exempt, the location is eligible. If neither of these conditions applies, check with the nearest official precipitation recording station for the most recent data for at least 30 years.
- How do we know if the building contains asbestos and what do we do if it does?
The TCEQ does not regulate surveying or abatement of asbestos. You should check with Texas Department of State Health Services for asbestos survey and abatement requirements. Rules concerning asbestos are found in Title 25, Part 1, Chapter 295, Subchapter C, or go to TDSHS.
- Are there any special disposal requirements for material that contains asbestos?
Yes. Regulated asbestos-containing materials (RACM) and non-regulated asbestos-containing materials (non-RACM) may be accepted for disposal. These materials may not be processed.
The TCEQ must be notified before a facility may receive RACM. You can notify the TCEQ that the facility will accept RACM on the PBR on your application form.
Non-RACM must be placed on the active working face and covered at the end of the operating day with at least six inches of compacted soil. These materials may not be placed on a surface that is subject to vehicular traffic or disposed of by any other means that could crumble the material into a friable state.
RACM must be transported and received at the facility in tightly closed and unruptured containers or bags or wrapped with at least six-mil polyethylene. Carefully unload and place bags in the final disposal location. RACM must then be covered immediately with at least six inches of compacted soil. Take care during unloading and placement of RACM and during application of the cover so that the bags or containers are not ruptured.
Do not use tarps to address cover requirements for RACM or non-RACM.
If RACM is received at the facility, the waste units that received the RACM will be considered to be RACM units. The facility is not required to record RACM locations because the entire unit will be assumed to contain RACM.
For more information about disposal of RACM or non-RACM go to Chapter 330, Subchapter D (Disposal of Special Wastes) (330.171(c)(3)).
- Can we salvage recyclable materials from the disposal site?
No. Separating recyclable materials from the waste at the disposal site would be a form of processing that is not authorized under the PBR. If you plan to salvage recyclable materials from abandoned or nuisance buildings, you should plan to conduct these activities at the building location during the demolition phase.
- What wastes may be disposed of at the disposal site?
These facilities may be used to dispose of wastes from the demolition of an abandoned or nuisance building and other materials from the property on which the building is located, including but not limited to: demolition waste, rubbish, trees, brush, vegetation, concrete sidewalks and driveways, furniture, sinks, bathtubs, and water heaters.
- What waste may not be disposed of at the disposal site?
Garbage and household wastes are not allowed for disposal at these facilities. Wastes listed in 30 TAC 330.15 may not be disposed of at the disposal site. Some examples are: lead acid batteries; used motor oil or oil filters; whole used or scrap tires; refrigerators, freezers, air conditioners and any other item containing chlorinated fluorocarbons (CFCs); regulated hazardous waste; polychlorinated biphenyls (PCB) wastes; or radioactive materials. Appliances may be disposed if they do not contain CFCs, free oils, or free liquids.
- Can the disposal site be used by private property owners?
No. This permit by rule is exclusive to cities or counties with a population of 12,000 or less that have acquired property through an action of bankruptcy, delinquent taxes, or condemnation where the previous owner is not financially capable of paying the costs of the demolition, transportation or disposal of the waste.
- Can the disposal site be used for wastes from other locations such as county road right of ways or illegal dump sites?
No. See above.
- Are disposal sites authorized by this permit by rule required to have a licensed Municipal Solid Waste Supervisor?
- What other authorizations maybe needed from the TCEQ for this permit by rule?
Depending on activities you conduct at the demolition or disposal site, you may require additional authorizations. For example, chipping, grinding, or mulching may require an air authorization, and a permit for construction stormwater may be needed depending on the amount of soil disturbed during construction of the disposal site. Contact a TCEQ Small Business and Local Government Assistance representative at 1-800-447-2827 for more assistance.
- Assistance Tools for Construction Stormwater General Permits
- Assistance Tools for Industrial Stormwater General Permits
- Keyword Index to Air Permits by Rule
Where can I find more information and assistance?
The TCEQ's Small Business and Local Government Assistance Section offers free, confidential help to small businesses and local governments working to comply with state environmental regulations. Call us at 800-447-2827 or visit our Web page at TexasEnviroHelp.org.