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Texas Supreme Court Declines to Reconsider Clean Air Act Preemption Decision

On June 14, 2013, the Texas Supreme Court declined to reconsider an earlier ruling that the Texas Clean Air Act ("TCAA") preempts a Houston ordinance specifying location requirements for concrete-crushing operations.

In February of this year, the court ruled in favor of a company that had obtained an air quality permit from TCEQ to move a concrete-crushing facility to a new location but had been denied a municipal permit by the City of Houston pursuant to a local ordinance. The court found that the ordinance was preempted by a provision of the TCAA stating that "[a]n ordinance enacted by a municipality . . . may not make unlawful a condition or act approved or authorized under [the TCAA] or the [TCEQ’s] rules or orders." Tex. Health & Safety Code § 382.113(b). It interpreted this language as demonstrating "the Legislature’s clear intent that a city may not pass an ordinance that effectively moots a [TCEQ] decision." (Opinion at 6.)

The case is Southern Crushed Concrete, LLC v City of Houston, No. 11-0270 (Tex.).

© 2020 Beveridge & Diamond PC National Law Review, Volume III, Number 180


About this Author

Karen M. Hansen Water Regulation Attorney Beveridge & Diamond Austin, TX

Karen Hanson’s practice focuses on the Clean Water Act and state programs for regulating and permitting water discharges and water supply/use, and on environmental, health, and safety audit review and implementation. 

She has extensive experience assisting industrial and municipal clients in preparing strategies for and pursuing water permits for ongoing operations, expansions and new operations, including permit challenges. Karen also represents clients that must defend CWA and state water law enforcement actions, including claims pursued by governmental as well as third party...

Madeleine Boyer Environmental Attorney Beveridge Diamond

Maddie brings 25 years of experience providing strategic and solutions-oriented counseling and representation on a broad range of US and Latin American environmental, health and safety standards.

Her portfolio includes environmental regulatory counseling; audit oversight and support; supply chain and product stewardship advocacy and compliance; and high-stakes enforcement matters. Her domestic caseload currently includes air and waste matters before the US Department of Justice, the Office of the Attorney General of the State of Texas, the US Environmental...

Laura L. LaValle Clean Air Act Attorney Beveridge & Diamond Austin, TX
Office Managing Principal

Laura's practice has focused on Clean Air Act matters for over 20 years.

Laura's air quality experience includes advising and representing entities on a broad range of permitting, compliance, and policy issues. She has represented chemical manufacturing operations, electric utilities, petroleum refineries, oil and gas pipelines and terminal facilities, alternative/renewable energy operations including solar energy projects, landfills and waste combustors, steel manufacturing facilities, mining operations, and other facility types regarding federal and state permitting and compliance...