The EPA and the Department of the Army published the proposed rule defining the scope of waters federally regulated under the Clean Water Act in the Federal Register on Feb. 14, 2019.
This proposal is the second step in a two-step process intended to review and revise the definition of “waters of the United States." This proposed rule is intended to increase CWA program predictability and consistency by increasing clarity as to the scope of “waters of the United States” federally regulated under the Act. This proposed definition revision is also intended to clearly implement the overall objective of the CWA to restore and maintain the quality of the nation's waters while respecting state and tribal authority over their own land and water resources.
Comments on the proposed rule must be received on or before April 15, 2019.
As of 2:15 p.m. EST Feb. 15, the rule had been viewed nearly 5,800 times.
How do you comment?
You may submit comments, identified by Docket ID No. EPA-HQ-OW-2018-0149, by any of the following methods:
Federal eRulemaking Portal: http://www.regulations.gov/(our preferred method). Follow the online instructions for submitting comments.
Email: OW-Docket@epa.gov. Include Docket ID No. EPA-HQ-OW-2018-0149 in the subject line of the message.
Mail: U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, EPA Docket Center, Office of Water Docket, Mail Code 28221T, 1200 Pennsylvania Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20460.
Hand Delivery/Courier: EPA Docket Center, WJC West Building, Room 3334, 1301 Constitution Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20004. The Docket Center's hours of operations are 8:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m., Monday-Friday (except Federal Holidays).
Instructions: All submissions received must include the Docket ID No. for this rulemaking. Comments received may be posted without change to https://www.regulations.gov/, including any personal information provided.
Got a question?
Contact Michael McDavit, Oceans, Wetlands, and Communities Division, Office of Water (4504-T), Environmental Protection Agency, 1200 Pennsylvania Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20460; telephone number: (202) 566-2428; email address: CWAwotus@epa.gov; or Jennifer A. Moyer, Regulatory Community of Practice (CECW-CO-R), U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, 441 G Street NW, Washington, DC 20314; telephone number: (202) 761-5903; email address: USACE_CWA_Rule@usace.army.mil.
“Today’s release of a new draft Clean Water Rule is a major step toward fair and understandable water regulation on America’s farms and ranches and other working lands,” said American Farm Bureau Federation President Zippy Duvall. “The previous rule would have treated much of the landscape as though it were water itself. That wasn’t just confusing, but also illegal, which is why so many federal courts blocked its implementation. We haven’t yet examined every word of today’s proposal, but even a quick look shows many of the previous rule’s worst problems are on their way out. We will examine this rule in further detail in the coming days and look forward to a thorough discussion over the next few months.”
After years of legal and political battling, the Trump administration is nearing the final stage of undoing President Obama’s overzealous Waters of the United States (or “WOTUS”) Rule. – Missouri Farm Bureau
We expect that the agencies will receive a large volume of comments on legal issues, policy questions, and detailed input on how the proposed rule would work in practice. – The National Law Review
Over 160 representatives signed a House letter and 36 senators signed a Senate letter pushing for the extended comment period. - Augusta Free Press