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RULE §15.2Definitions

  (31) Effect or effects--"Effects" include: direct effects--those impacts on public beach use and access, on critical dune areas, or on dunes and dune vegetation seaward of a dune protection line which are caused by an action and occur at the same time and place; and indirect effects--those impacts on beach use and access, on critical dune areas, or on dunes and dune vegetation seaward of a dune protection line which are caused by an action and are later in time or farther removed in distance than a direct effect, but are still reasonably foreseeable. Indirect effects may include growth inducing effects and other effects related to induced changes in the pattern of land use, population density, or growth rate, and related effects on air and water and other natural systems, including ecosystems. "Effects" and "impacts" as used in this subchapter are synonymous. "Effects" may be ecological (such as the effects on natural resources and on the components, structures, and functioning of affected ecosystems), aesthetic, historic, cultural, economic, social, or health, whether direct, indirect, or cumulative.

  (32) Eroding area--A portion of the shoreline which is experiencing an historical erosion rate of greater than two feet per year based on published data of the University of Texas at Austin, Bureau of Economic Geology. Local governments may establish an "eroding area boundary" in beach/dune plans; this boundary shall be whichever distance landward of the line of vegetation is greater: 200 feet, or the distance determined by multiplying 50 years by the annual historical erosion rate (based on the most recent data published by the University of Texas at Austin, Bureau of Economic Geology).

  (33) Erosion--The wearing away of land or the removal of beach and/or dune sediments by wave action, tidal currents, wave currents, drainage, or wind. Erosion includes, but is not limited to, horizontal recession and scour and can be induced or aggravated by human activities.

  (34) Erosion response structure--A hard or rigid structure built for shoreline stabilization which includes, but is not limited to, a jetty, groin, breakwater, bulkhead, seawall, riprap, rubble mound, revetment, or the foundation of a structure which is the functional equivalent of these specified structures.

  (35) FEMA--The United States Federal Emergency Management Agency. This agency administers the National Flood Insurance Program and publishes the official flood insurance rate maps.

  (36) Fibercrete--Unreinforced concrete, consisting of a combination of pulped paper, or other cellulose-based raw material, and binders such as lime, cement, and/or clay.

  (37) Foredune ridge--The high continuous line of dunes which are usually well vegetated and rise sharply landward of the foredune area but may also rise directly from a flat, wave-cut beach immediately after a storm.

  (38) Foredunes--The first clearly distinguishable, usually vegetated, stabilized large dunes encountered landward of the Gulf of Mexico. On some portions of the Texas Gulf Coast, foredunes may also be large, unvegetated, and unstabilized. Although they may be large and continuous, foredunes are typically hummocky and discontinuous and may be interrupted by breaches and washover areas. Foredunes offer the first significant means of dissipating storm-generated wave and current energy issuing from the Gulf of Mexico. Because various heights and configurations of dunes may perform this function, no standardized physical description applies. Foredunes are distinguishable from surrounding dune types by their relative location and physical appearance.

  (39) Habitable structure footprint--The area of a lot covered by a structure used or usable for habitation. The habitable structure footprint does not include uncovered stairs and decks, incidental projecting eaves, balconies, ground-level paving, landscaping, open recreational facilities (for example, pools and tennis courts), or other similar features.

  (40) Habitable structures--Structures suitable for human habitation including, but not limited to, single or multi-family residences, hotels, condominium buildings, and commercial facilities. Each building of a condominium regime is considered a separate habitable structure, but if a building is divided into apartments, then the entire building, not the individual apartments, is considered a single habitable structure. Additionally, a habitable structure includes porches or gazebos, and other attached improvements.

  (41) Industrial facilities--Include, but are not limited to, those establishments listed in Part 1, Division D, Major Groups 20 - 39 and Part 1, Division E, Major Group 49 of the Standard Industrial Classification Manual as adopted by the Executive Office of the President, Office of Management and Budget (1987 ed.). However, for the purposes of this subchapter, the establishments listed in Part 1, Division D, Major Group 20, Industry Group Number 209, Industry Numbers 2091 and 2092 are not considered "industrial facilities." These establishments are listed in "Appendix I" attached to this section.

  (42) Large-scale construction--Construction activity greater than 5,000 square feet or habitable structures greater than two stories in height. Both the area beneath the lowest habitable level of an elevated structure and a cupola (i.e. "widow's walk") with an area of 400 square feet or less on the top of the second habitable story are not considered stories for the purpose of this section. Multiple-family habitable structures are typical of this type of construction.

  (43) Line of vegetation--The extreme seaward boundary of natural vegetation which spreads continuously inland. The line of vegetation is typically used to determine the landward extent of the public beach.

  (44) Local government--A municipality, county, any special purpose district, any unit of government, or any other political subdivision of the state.

  (45) Man-made vegetated mound--A mound, hill, or ridge of sand created by the deliberate placement of sand or sand trapping devices including sand fences, trees, or brush and planted with dune vegetation.

  (46) Master plan--A plan developed by the applicant in consultation with the General Land Office, the applicant or applicants, and the local government, for the development of an area subject to the beach/dune rules, as identified in §15.3 of this title (relating to Administration). The master plan shall fully describe in narrative form the proposed development and all proposed land and water uses, and shall include maps, drawings, and tables, and other information, as needed. The master plan must, at a minimum, fully describe the general geology and geography of the site, land and water use intensities, size and location of all buildings, structures, and improvements, all vehicular and pedestrian access ways, and parking or storage facilities, location and design of utility systems, location and design of any erosion response structures, retaining walls, or stormwater treatment management systems, and the schedule for all construction activities described in the master plan. The master plan shall comply with the Open Beaches Act and the Dune Protection Act. The master plan shall provide for overall compliance with the beach/dune rules, but may vary from the specific standards, means and methods provided in the beach/dune rules if the degree of dune protection and the public's right to safe and healthy use of and access to and from the public beach are preserved. If all impacts to dunes, dune vegetation and public beach use and access are accurately identified, local governments shall not require permits or certificates for construction on the individual lots within the master plan area. Master plans are intended to provide a comprehensive option for planning along the Texas coast.

  (47) Material changes--Changes in project design, construction materials, or construction methods or in the condition of the construction site which occur after an application is submitted to a local government or after the local government issues a permit or certificate. Material changes are those additional or unanticipated changes which may have caused or may cause adverse effects on dunes, dune vegetation, or beach access and use, or exacerbation of erosion on or adjacent to the construction site.

  (48) Meteorological Event--Atmospheric conditions or phenomena resulting in avulsion, erosion, accretion, or other impacts to the shoreline that alter the location of the line of vegetation.

  (49) Mitigation sequence--The series of steps which must be taken if dunes and dune vegetation will be adversely affected. First, such adverse effects shall be avoided. Second, adverse effects shall be minimized. Third, the dunes and dune vegetation adversely affected shall be repaired, restored, or replaced. Fourth, the dunes and dune vegetation adversely affected shall be replaced or substituted to compensate for the adverse effects.

  (50) National Flood Insurance Act--42 United States Code, §§4001, et seq.

  (51) Natural resources--Land, fish, wildlife, insects, biota, air, surface water, groundwater, plants, trees, habitat of flora and fauna, and other such resources.


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