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RULE §15.13Disaster Recovery Orders

(k) Shoreline protection project repairs. Except for the general prohibition on maintaining or repairing erosion response structures in §15.6(d) of this title, a local government may authorize repairs to an existing shoreline protection project, subject to the following limitations:

  (1) Repairs to existing shoreline protection projects may be permitted to minimize further damage to coastal residences and littoral property, provided the existing shoreline protection project does not substantially restrict or interfere with the public use and access of the beach at normal high tide;

  (2) A local government shall not authorize any person to repair a shoreline protection project that is located below the boundary of coastal public land; and

  (3) The existing shoreline protection project must conform to the policies of the General Land Office promulgated in §26.26(b) of this title (relating to Policies for Construction in the Beach/Dune System).

(l) Prohibition on certain materials. A local government shall not allow any person to undertake dune restoration projects or temporary shoreline protection projects using any of the following methods or materials:

  (1) Materials such as bulkheads, riprap, concrete (including sprayed concrete), or asphalt rubble, building construction materials, and any non-biodegradable items;

  (2) Sediments containing the hazardous substances listed in Appendix A to §302.4 in Volume 40 of the Code of Federal Regulations, Part 302 in concentrations which are harmful to people, flora, and fauna as determined by applicable, relevant, and appropriate requirements for toxicity standards established by the local, state, and federal governments; or

  (3) Sand obtained by scraping or grading dunes, or from beaches in eroding areas.

(m) Repair of sewage or septic systems. If the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality or its designated local authority, the Texas Department of State Health Services, or a local health department has made a determination that a sewage or septic system located on or adjacent to the public beach poses a threat to the health of the occupants of the property or public health, safety, or welfare, and requires removal of the sewage or septic system, the sewage or septic system shall be located in accordance with §15.5(b)(1) of this title (relating to Beachfront Construction Standards) and §15.6(b) and (e)(1) of this title.

(n) Authorized beach maintenance practices. If a material change in conditions occurs, such as significant beach erosion caused by a declared or natural disaster, the commissioner may require a local government affected by an order issued under this section to suspend the authority of a permittee to scrape a beach under a previously issued beach maintenance permit. The local government may require a permittee to obtain a new permit incorporating beach maintenance practices consistent with the changed conditions. The commissioner shall be given an opportunity to comment on any such new permit application.

(o) Removal of beach debris. The GLO is responsible for clearing debris from the public beach in accordance with Texas Natural Resources Code, §61.067. While an order issued under this section is in effect, a local government with the duty to clean and maintain the public beach shall coordinate with the GLO and, where appropriate, littoral property owners to remove beach debris from the public beach as soon as possible. All beach debris collected from the public beach shall be removed from the beach/dune system and disposed of in an appropriate landfill.

(p) GLO review. A local government shall submit the certificate or permit applications for recovery repair, recovery dune restoration, or any other activity authorized under this section to the commissioner for review. If the commissioner does not object to or otherwise comment on the application within 10 working days of receipt of an application, the local government may act on the application. Local governments shall require that all permit and certificate applicants fully disclose in the application all items and information necessary for the local government to make a determination regarding a permit or certificate for repairs. Local governments may require more information, but the following information shall be submitted to the GLO:

  (1) the name, address, phone number, and, if applicable, electronic mail address of the applicant, and the name of the property owner, if different from the applicant;

  (2) a complete legal description of the tract and a statement of its size in acres or square feet including the location of the property lines and a notation of the legal description of adjoining tracts;

  (3) the floor plan, footprint or elevation view of the house identifying the proposed repairs;

  (4) color photographs of the site which clearly show the current conditions of the site; and

  (5) an accurate map, site plan, plat, or survey of the site identifying:

    (A) the site by its legal description, including, where applicable, the subdivision, block, and lot;

    (B) the location of the property lines and a notation of the legal description of adjoining tracts, and the location of any roadways, driveways and landscaping that currently exist on the tract;

    (C) the location of any seawalls or any other erosion response structures on the tract and on the properties immediately adjacent to the tract;

    (D) the location of the house and the distance between the house and mean high tide, mean low tide, and the line of vegetation;

    (E) if known, the location and extent of any man-made vegetated mounds, restored dunes, fill activities, or any other pre-existing human modifications on the tract; and

    (F) if the proposed action includes a recovery dune restoration project, grading and layout plan identifying existing contours of the project area (including the location of dunes and swales), and proposed contours for final grade.

  (6) the source of any sand and vegetation used for a recovery dune restoration project; and;

  (7) any other information requested by the local government or the GLO that is necessary to determine whether the application is consistent with this section.

(q) Monitoring. A local government is responsible for monitoring a recovery stabilization, recovery repair, recovery dune restoration project, or shoreline protection project repair under this section. A local government may conduct a monitoring program to study the effects of such projects on the public's access to and use of the public beach. Expenses related to the monitoring program are considered beach-related services for the purpose of this subchapter.

(r) Effect on actions for removal. This section does not create a property right of any kind in the littoral property owner. Houses eligible for repairs to maintain habitability under this section may also be encroachments on and interferences with the public beach easement. Except as provided in an unexpired temporary order issued by the commissioner under §61.0185 of the Texas Natural Resources Code, the commissioner, the attorney general, a county attorney, district attorney, or criminal district attorney may file suit under Texas Natural Resources Code §61.018(a) to obtain a temporary or permanent injunction, either prohibitory or mandatory, to remove a house from the public beach without regard to whether the house is eligible for repairs under this section.

Source Note: The provisions of this §15.13 adopted to be effective April 9, 2009, 34 TexReg 2239; amended to be effective June 12, 2014, 39 TexReg 4482; amended to be effective May 8, 2023, 48 TexReg 2343

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