TCOG Announces Supplemental Environmental Projects Administration

TCOG Announces Supplemental Environmental Projects Administration

News Release
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

TCOG Announces Supplemental Environmental Projects Administration

SHERMAN, February 4, 2014 – Susan B. Thomas, PhD, Executive Director of Texoma Council of Governments (TCOG), announced today the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality has approved TCOG as an approved 3rd party administrator for Supplemental Environmental Projects (SEP). A Supplemental Environmental Project is a project that prevents pollution, reduces the amount of pollution reaching the environment, enhances the quality of the environment, or contributes to public awareness of environmental matters. A respondent in an enforcement action may negotiate an agreement to perform a SEP in return for an offset of the administrative penalty. For respondents who wish to contribute directly to the environmental improvement of their communities, the SEP policy provides an alternative to payment of the full amount of an administrative penalty to the state General Revenue fund and keeps the money in our region. – Susan B. Thomas, PhD, Executive Director of TCOGThe proposal to include a particular SEP in an agreed order will be presented to the Commission or Executive Director for consideration and final approval. Potential SEPs include such diverse projects as cleanups of abandoned tire sites or illegal dump sites, community collections of household hazardous waste, and pollution prevention projects that exceed regulatory requirements. SEPs that have a direct benefit allow a respondent to offset one dollar of its penalty for every dollar spent on the SEP.

Dr. Thomas said, “A local government respondent may be able to perform a SEP to correct the violations or to remediate environmental harm caused by the violations. For respondents who wish to contribute directly to the environmental improvement of their communities, the SEP policy provides an alternative to payment of the full amount of an administrative penalty to the state General Revenue fund and keeps the money in our region.”

The Texoma Council of Governments is a voluntary association of the local governments in Cooke, Fannin, and Grayson Counties. Established in 1968, the Texoma Council of Governments promotes economy and efficiency in the coordinated planning and development of the tri-county region through its community and economic development activities. Either directly, or through contractors, the Council provides housing, utility assistance, and weatherization services for low-income citizens in the region and assists the elderly through a variety of Area Agency on Aging programs. The Council also facilitates the delivery of grant funding for homeland security and criminal justice.

FOR ADDITIONAL INFORMATION CONTACT:
David Trout
903-813-3550

FOR INTERVIEWS/STATEMENTS CONTACT:
DR. SUSAN B. THOMAS
903-813-3514