Posts tagged Clean Water Act.

On October 22, 2019, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (Corps) and U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) published their final rule repealing the 2015 “Waters of the United States” (WOTUS) rule.  The repeal will be effective on December 23, 2019.  The breadth of the WOTUS rule affects which water bodies and wetlands are subject to pollution protection under the federal Clean Water Act.  In late 2018, EPA and the Corps issued a proposed WOTUS rule to narrow the definition of WOTUS, and solicited public comment.  The new WOTUS rule is not expected to be finalized until 2020, and is ...

On May 31, 2016, in United States Army Corps of Engineers v. Hawkes Co., Inc. et al., the U.S. Supreme Court unanimously ruled that approved wetland jurisdictional determinations (JDs) by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) are appealable final actions.  This decision enables landowners to appeal JDs that they believe are unlawful soon after the determinations are made.  The Court’s decision (see link below) eliminates the Corps prior requirement that a JD could only be challenged after the landowner applies for and is denied a permit or after the landowner proceeds with development without a permit and faces an enforcement action. The direct appeal of a JD will save landowners wishing to challenge a JD considerable time, effort, and expense. 

The terms “waters of the United States” and “navigable waters” play a critical role in defining the scope of federal programs that protect water resources nationwide.  These federal water protection programs have a direct and substantial impact on real estate development, construction activities, mining, farming and other commercial activities.

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