Municipal Settings Designation
The Municipal Settings Designation (“MSD”) is a state designation that certifies that groundwater beneath a property is negatively affected by chemical contaminants above drinking water standards and prohibits use of affected groundwater for potable purposes. The MSD is a deed restriction supported by City Council Resolution and TCEQ Certification.
The MSD prohibits the use of shallow groundwater beneath the site property for potable purposes thereby allowing use of alternate cleanup levels that are not as stringent as groundwater ingestion cleanup levels.
For a property to be eligible for an MSD, groundwater must be affected above Texas Risk Reduction Program (TRRP) Tier 1 Protective Concentration Levels (“PCLs”) and the applicant must be enrolled in a TCEQ program such as the Corrective Action Program or Voluntary Cleanup Program (VCP). Tier 1 PCLs for groundwater ingestion are the primary critical cleanup levels applied under TRRP and are based on levels that could cause adverse human health effects due to ingestion of groundwater affected by chemical impacts.
Since the MSD prohibits the use of shallow groundwater beneath the site property for potable purposes, the MSD also eliminates the potential for somebody to drink affected groundwater thus the “groundwater ingestion” exposure pathway can be eliminated as a human health concern. Alternate cleanup levels could then be established that are not as stringent as groundwater ingestion cleanup levels. Under most circumstances, obtaining an MSD will be enough to achieve groundwater cleanup levels and obtain regulatory closure from the Corrective Action Program or VCP.
The MSD can cover a single affected property or multiple adjoining properties. Typically, the affected property enrolls into a TCEQ program and uses the MSD as a remedy to mitigate chemical exceedances of the “groundwater ingestion” pathway. MSD applicants can extend MSD coverage to include multiple adjoining properties.
EnviroPhase has significant experience in this area and can perform an evaluation to determine if a site qualifies for MSD deed restriction.
EnviroPhase has obtained numerous MSDs to support mitigation efforts on behalf of affected property owners that result in site closure. It is estimated EnviroPhase has successfully obtained almost 10% of all MSDs granted in the State of Texas in the past 5+ years.
Contact us for a complimentary consultation regarding the options available to you in pursuing a Municipal Settings Designation (MSD).