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Southern Crop

Definition of ‘Waters of the United States’–Recodification of Pre-Existing Rules

Update – U.S. Streams and Wetlands – Definition of Waters of the United States (WOTUS) – The EPA and the Army Corps of Engineers have published in the July 27, 2017 their previously announced Proposed Rule to “… initiate the first step in a comprehensive, two-step process intended to review and revise the definition of ‘waters of the United States’ … This first step proposes to rescind the definition of ‘waters of the United States’ in the Code of Federal Regulations to re-codify the definition of ‘waters of the United States,’ which currently governs administration of the Clean Water Act … The agencies would apply the definition of ‘waters of the United States’ as it is currently being implemented, that is informed by applicable agency guidance documents and consistent with Supreme Court decisions and longstanding practice …” – The Agencies note that “… proposing to re-codify the regulations that existed before the 2015 Clean Water Rule will provide continuity and certainty for regulated entities, the States, agency staff, and the public. In a second step, the agencies will pursue notice-and-comment rulemaking in which the agencies will conduct a substantive re-evaluation of the definition of ‘waters of the United States’ …”

Document Title: * The title of the July 27, 2017 U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and EPA Federal Register Proposed Rule is “Definition of ‘Waters of the United States’–Recodification of Pre-Existing Rules”
* The title of the June 27, 2017 EPA News Release is “EPA, U.S. Army Move to Rescind 2015 ‘Waters of the U.S.'”
* The title of the May 15, 2017 EPA News Release is “EPA Launches New ‘Waters of the U.S.’ Website; New site aims to provide transparency and information about EPA review of ‘WOTUS'”
* The title of the April 3, 2017 U.S. Supreme Court Order is “National Association of Manufacturers v. U.S. Department of Defense, et al.”
* The title of the March 6, 2017 U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and EPA Federal Register Proposed Rule is “Intention To Review and Rescind or Revise the Clean Water Rule”

Organization: The July 27, 2017 and March 6, 2017 Federal Register Proposed Rules were signed on June 27, 2017 and February 28, 2017, respectively, by E. Scott Pruitt who is the EPA Administrator and by Douglas W. Lamont who is the Senior Offical Performing the Duties of the Assistant Secretary of the Army for Civil Works of the Department of the Army

The June 27, 2017 and May 15, 2017 News Releases were issued by the EPA Media Relations

Source: * July 27, 2017 and March 6, 2017 U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and EPA Federal Register Proposed Rules
* June 27, 2017 and May 15, 2017 EPA News Releases
* April 3, 2017 U.S. Supreme Court Order 16-299

Comments Due By: August 28, 2017

Effective Date:

Web site: The July 27, 2017 U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and EPA Federal Register Proposed Rule is posted at
http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/FR-2017-07-27/html/2017-13997.htm

The June 27, 2017 EPA News Release is posted at
http://www.epa.gov/newsreleases/epa-us-army-move-rescind-2015-waters-us

The June 27, 2017 House Agriculture Committee Press Release, titled “Conaway Praises EPA Repeal of WOTUS, Calls for Continued Work to Protect Farmers and Ranchers; ‘WOTUS has never been about clean water, it was about feeding the Obama EPA’s insatiable appetite for power. Well that ends now.'”, is posted at
http://agriculture.house.gov/news/documentsingle.aspx?DocumentID=3958

The May 15, 2017 EPA News Release is posted at
http://www.epa.gov/newsreleases/epa-launches-new-waters-us-website

The April 3, 2017 U.S. Supreme Court Order is posted at
http://www.supremecourt.gov/orders/courtorders/040317zor_e2p3.pdf

The March 6, 2017 U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and EPA Federal Register Proposed Rule is posted at
http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/FR-2017-03-06/html/2017-04312.htm

The February 28, 2017 “Remarks by President Trump at Signing of Waters of the United States (WOTUS) Executive Order” is posted at
http://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2017/02/28/remarks-president-trump-signing-waters-united-states-wotus-executive
* The Presidential Executive Order on Restoring the Rule of Law, Federalism, and Economic Growth by Reviewing the “Waters of the United States” Rule is posted at
http://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2017/02/28/presidential-executive-order-restoring-rule-law-federalism-and-economic

The February 28, 2017 EPA News Release, titled “EPA to Act on Waters of the United States Rule”, is posted at
http://www.epa.gov/newsreleases/epa-act-waters-united-states-rule-1

The February 28, 2017 Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works Press Release, titled “Barrasso Statement on Executive Order on Waters of the United States “, is posted at
http://www.epw.senate.gov/public/index.cfm/press-releases-republican?ContentRecord_id=4B302E67-6EE8-4BBF-A635-FE6DC05C4080

The February 28, 2017 House Agriculture Committee Press Release, titled “Chairman Conaway Applauds Trump Administration’s Action on WOTUS”, is posted at
http://agriculture.house.gov/news/documentsingle.aspx?DocumentID=3703

Additional Documents Related to the Clean Water Rule are available at
http://www2.epa.gov/cleanwaterrule
* Specifically at
http://www2.epa.gov/cleanwaterrule/clean-water-rule-documents-related-clean-water-rule

Previous FIEN messages related to this topic may be found by using the search term – Waters of the United States – at http://www.fien.com/login/logins.php?RELOAD=/search_article.php

Contact: Questions about the Proposed Rule may be directed to:
* Donna Downing who is with the EPA Office of Water at 202 566 2428; e-mail: CWAwotus@EPA.gov
* Stacey Jensen who is with the Regulatory Community of Practice (CECW-CO-R) of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers at 703 761 5903; e-mail: USACE_CWA_Rule@USACE.Army.mil

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