Public Comment Letter to TCEQ from Glenn Shankle

November 20, 2012

 

Ms. Bridget Bohac
Chief Clerk
Texas Commission on Environmental Quality
P.O. Box 13087
Austin, Texas 78711-3087

 

Re: Proposed Type I Municipal Solid Waste Permit, Permit Number 2377
Proposed Type V Transfer Registration , Number 40259

 

Dear: Ms. Bohac:

 

Shankle & Associates write this letter of comments to the reference matter above on behalf of the Citizens Against the Landfill In Hempstead (CALH). The comments contain in this letter are in opposition to the Proposed Pintail Landfill in Hempstead Texas.

On October 19, 2012 I filed a Public Information Act request, also commonly referred to as an Open Records Request, asking for the policies and procedures and training materials used by the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ) to process a Type V Transfer Station and a Type I Municipal Solid Waste landfill permit application. I received my response to this request on or about October 29, 2012. Please refer to PIR# 10061.

The policies and procedures I received stated that there would not be a third Notice of Deficiency (NOD) for the Type V Transfer Station and there would not be a third NOD for the Type I Municipal Solid Waste Landfill application. The issue of whether the agency can issue more than two NODs has been one of the key pieces of debate with regard to these two referenced applications. The policy I received states there will not be any third NODs. In fact, the policy states that if the response to the second NOD is not sufficient the application must be returned.

At the November 15, 2012 public meeting, it was argued by the agency they did not have a policy or procedure for processing the referenced type permits, but the agency did have internal guidance documents for processing these applications. With all due respect, the information I requested was for policies, procedures and training materials and the information received was the agency’s polices for processing these types of applications.

To further validate my position that I was sent the agency’s policies for these matters, on April 10, 2012 Mr. Hunt Prompuntagorn, TCEQ’s permit reviewer/writer for these applications sent Pintail, LLC their first NOD. In Mr. Prompuntagorn’s closing of the first NOD letter he states to Pintail: “In addition, please be aware a third technical notice of deficiency will not be issued”.

Green Group Holdings, LLC/Pintail, LLC has been issued Five (5) NODs for their Type V Transfer Station Registration by TCEQ. And, Green Group Holdings, LLC/Pintail, LLC has been issued Three (3) NODs for their Type I Municipal Solid Waste Permit application by TCEQ.

I may have already sent in comments on the following, but, since the issue came up at the November 15, 2012 public meeting, I find it necessary to comment on the matter again. There has been much debate about which came first, the County Ordinance or the Landfill Application.

One of the centerpieces of the debate is that TCEQ should not accept a permit application for a landfill without proof of property ownership or authorization of land use. Pintail, LLC submitted a Property Owners Affidavit on July 13, 2011 that was altered and rejected. Pintail did not submit the proper Affidavit until January 2012, thus making the ordinance have first standing. Please see the attached letter from Mr. Ruben Meza, TCEQ’s Engineering Specialist to Pintail LLC. I refer you to items one and two in Mr. Meza’s letter to Pintail. Please also note that the signature of the July 13, 2011 Property Owners affidavit bears a different signature for the same name of the properly submitted affidavit in January 2012.

TCEQ has given Green Group Holdings, LLC/Pintail, LLC three extensions. By regulation the Executive Director must approve permit extensions in writing. There is no record showing where the Executive Director has approved an extension in writing. TCEQ has erred by not following the law, rules and it’s own policy and procedures or what TCEQ calls their internal guidance.

Thank you for your time and attention to this matter. I ask that this letter be entered as comments opposing the Registration and Permit for the Green Group Holdings, LLC and Pintail, LLC.

 

Sincerely,

 

Glenn W. Shankle
Email: gshankle@austin.rr.com
Phone: 512-415-1331

Click HERE for a printable PDF version of this letter.

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