What is the Texas Voluntary Cleanup Program (“VCP”)?

According to the TCEQ’s website, the Texas VCP provides administrative, technical, and legal incentives to encourage the cleanup of contaminated sites in Texas. The VCP is a brownfields program designed to address sites that are burdened by real or reasonably perceived environmental issues that may hamper real estate transactions or redevelopment.

Since all non-responsible parties, including future lenders and landowners, receive protection from liability to the state of Texas for cleanup of sites under the VCP, most of the constraints for completing real estate transactions at those sites are eliminated once a VCP certificate of completion is issued.  As a result, many unused or under used properties may be restored to economically productive or community beneficial use.

Parties entering the VCP must submit an application, a $1,000 application fee, CORE Data Form, and any previously prepared reports pertaining to the site. At the time of the application, or within 30 days of the date of acceptance of the VCP application, the applicant(s) must sign an agreement that describes a schedule of submittals necessary to achieve cleanup and confirms that the applicant has agreed to pay all VCP oversight costs.

After completion of attainment of the remedy standard, a certificate of completion will be issued by the TCEQ which states that all non-responsible parties are released from all liability to the state for cleanup of areas covered by the certificate. Parties may terminate their participation in the VCP at any time by written notice.

You can learn more about the Texas Voluntary Cleanup Program at the TCEQ’s website at: https://www.tceq.texas.gov/remediation/vcp/vcp.html

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