After a Remedial Investigation has been completed, a project is eligible for enrollment in the NYC BCP. Once enrolled, each project must submit a Remedial Action Work Plan (RAWP) for review. The RAWP must adequately describe the remedy chosen to render the site protective of public health and the environment. In addition, the RAWP will include required Citizen Participation components. Once a remedy is completed it will be documented in a Remedial Action Report, which will also include a Site Management Plan describing all Engineering and Institutional Controls that will be implemented at the site to render it protective of public health and the environment. A Declaration of Covenants and Restrictions will be filed for each site that uses Engineering and/or Institutional Controls to achieve the remedy. Each successfully completed project will receive a Notice of Completion from the City of New York, which includes New York City liability release, a statement from the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation that it has no further interest and does not plan to take enforcement or require remedial action for the property under CERCLA or the Environmental Conservation Law, and issuance of NYC Green Property Certification that symbolizes the city’s confidence that the property is protective of public health and the environment.
A Remedial Investigation (RI) is required to define the source, nature and extent of contamination in soil, groundwater and soil vapor at the site to enable the selection of a remedy that is protective of public health and the environment. A RI is performed prior to enrollment into the NYC BCP. Parties that are interested in enrolling in the NYC BCP should attend a RI scoping session with OER to ensure that all work is performed and reported in a manner that complies with program requirements.
Remedial Investigation Report
A Remedial Investigation Report (RIR) provides information required to understand contaminant distribution and behavior on a property and provides the basis for selection of an appropriate remedy. The basic goals of the Remedial Investigation Report for a property include:
- identify all potential sources of contamination based on investigation of past uses;
- define the nature and extent of contamination in all media both laterally and vertically;
- perform a human health exposure assessment;
- assess contaminant fate and transport including the existing and potential impacts on groundwater, soil and soil vapor; and
- produce data of sufficient quantity and quality to support the development of an acceptable Remedial Action Work Plan.
The Remedial Investigation Report should be developed in a manner consistent with existing guidance for implementation of voluntary cleanup programs in New York State. OER provides a template for the RIR that gives detailed guidance for the structure and content of the document. Contact OER to obtain a template.
The RIR must be submitted to OER with the application for enrollment in the NYC BCP.
Remedial Action Work Plan
The Remedial Action Work Plan (RAWP) describes all of the remedial actions that are necessary to render a site protective of public health and the environment for the intended use. There are four categories of intended use for a site:
- restricted residential
- restricted commercial
- restricted industrial
To render a site protective for its contemplated use, the NYC BCP uses New York State soil cleanup standards and alternative cleanup tracks found at 6NYCRR Part 375-3.6. Parties should contact OER for more information about cleanup requirements.
Every RAWP is subject to a 30-day public comment period that begins upon submission of the draft plan to OER. Each RAWP must be approved by OER prior to implementation.
The RAWP must be developed in a manner that is consistent with existing guidance for the implementation of voluntary cleanup programs in New York State. OER will provide a template for the RAWP. See the Forms and Templates page for more information.
As part of each RAWP, the enrollee must include a remedial alternatives analysis that provides a basis for the proposed remedial action, and explains why the remedial action is protective of public health and the environment for the intended use.
The RAWP also includes a remedial work schedule, a Health and Safety Plan, a description of all Engineering and Institutional Controls and an explanation of site management requirements to be implemented after successful completion of the remedy.
The Remedial Action Work Plan also includes a Community Protection Statement that summarizes community protections that will be established during the remedial process. The Community Protection Statement is written in accessible, non-technical language so that community members are able to easily understand the work to be performed. It summarizes such issues as the community air monitoring plan, all odor, dust and noise control measures, hours of operation, and other good housekeeping practices that will be implemented at each NYC BCP site.
A Citizen Participation Plan is a required component of the NYC BCP. Enrollees for all projects must keep the public informed during the NYC BCP in the following ways:
Document repositories make the principal documents produced during the remedial program available so that the community can review them. These documents include Remedial Investigation Reports, Remedial Action Work Plans and Reports and all public notices issued during the project. Preferred repository locations are generally the most convenient public library for the community with evening and weekend hours.
OER strongly encourages the use of digital documents in repositories as a means of resource conservation while also increasing convenience in access and ease of use.
Public Notice and Public Comment
The enrollee will prepare a Site Contact List for each NYC BCP project that will be used to inform the public of important project information and invite public comment at specified steps during the remedial program. The Site Contact List will include owners and occupants of on-site and adjacent buildings and residences, administrators of nearby schools, hospitals and day care centers, the local Community Board, and elected officials. Members of the public can request to be added to the Site Contact List.
Public notice to all members of the Site Contact List is required at three Citizen Participation Milestones achieved during the remedial program. Notices will consist of a fact sheet that includes descriptive project summaries, updates on recent and upcoming project activities, repository information, and OER contact information.
Final review of work plans by OER will consider all public comments. OER will not approve work plans until the public comment period has been completed.
Upon completion of the remedial action, an enrollee must submit a Remedial Action Report (RAR) to OER. Contact OER to obtain a template. Among other information, the RAR will include:
- a certification that remediation requirements outlined in the RAWP have been achieved;
- a full description of all Engineering and Institutional Controls to be used at the site;
- an approvable Site Management Plan that includes the intended management of all Engineering and/or Institutional Controls; and
- an executed Declaration of Covenants and Restrictions (if Engineering or Institutional Control are employed).
Engineering Controls and Institutional Controls are physical and non-physical controls commonly used to enable long-term management of residual contamination at remedial sites after completion of the approved remedial actions. If Engineering Controls and Institutional Controls are part of a site cleanup plan, the RAWP and RAR must describe the mechanisms that will be used to implement, maintain, monitor, and report on these restrictions and controls.
All Engineering and Institutional Controls are managed according to an OER-approved Site Management Plan (SMP) submitted as part of the RAR. OER will approve the SMP and RAR prior to issuance of the Notice of Completion.
The Site Management Plan provides for periodic inspection and certification of the Engineering and Institutional Controls. These safeguards ensure that the site remains protective of public health and the environment, and that future changes at the site will not interfere with the remedy.
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Declaration of Covenants and Restrictions
For any project that relies on Engineering and Institutional Controls to maintain a protective cleanup, the enrollee must file an OER-approved Declaration of Covenants and Restrictions with the recording office of the county in which the site resides. This document, which is filed with the deed to the property, describes all restrictions on the use of the property that the approved RAWP requires and notes the existence and requirements of the SMP. Employees of OER are authorized to enter and inspect any property subject to a Declaration of Covenants and Restrictions to ensure compliance with the SMP.
Since the Declaration of Covenants and Restrictions can only be filed by a property owner, ownership of the site or an agreement with the owner may be required in order to successfully complete the NYC BCP.
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Notice of Completion
Completion of the NYC BCP occurs when a Notice of Completion is issued to the enrollee by the Director of OER. This occurs after OER has determined that all remedial requirements, as defined in the approved RAWP, have been achieved at the site and after all remedial actions have been properly documented in an OER-approved Remedial Action Report. Upon issuance of the Notice of Completion, an enrollee is eligible for a NYC Green Property Certification for the Site.
At the time that the Notice of Completion is issued to the enrollee, the City of New York acknowledges that the enrollee has no further environmental liability to the City with respect to the enrolled site, subject to certain reopeners. This liability limitation is assignable to the enrollee’s successors and assigns who take title to, develop, or otherwise occupy the site, provided such parties adhere to the requirements of the NYC BCA. Furthermore, under an agreement with New York State, the enrollee will also receive a liability statement from the NYS Department of Environmental Conservation that the State has no further interest and does not plan to take enforcement or require remedial action at the enrolled site under CERCLA or the State Environmental Conservation Law.
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