Federal “Waters of the US” Rule Sent Back To EPA Drawing Board

Today, President Trump issued an executive order, shelving the controversial “Waters of the United States” rule, which had been pending from the Environmental Protection Agency and on hold amidst legal challenges. The executive order directs the US EPA and the Army Corps of Engineers to re-work the matter before proposing a subsequent recommendation.

From NACo coverage:

Surrounded by county leaders from across the country, President Donald Trump today signed an executive order to revamp the Obama administration’s controversial “Waters of the U.S.” rule under the Clean Water Act and directed the Environmental Protection Agency and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to come up with a new definition.

Under the order, the EPA and the Corps are to restart and rewrite the rule to enable more common-sense local implementation. Since the rule was originally proposed, NACo consistently requested the agencies withdraw and revise the rule to include state and local government concerns.

“We are encouraged by the president’s action and look forward to a renewed dialogue with the EPA and the Corps to develop more workable rules at the local level,” said NACo President Bryan Desloge. “Since counties play a critical role in implementing and enforcing federal water policies, it is crucial that the agencies work with us to develop rules and regulations that work at the local level.


For prior coverage of this long-running issue, see:

Supreme Court Will Take Up Waters of the US

Federal Court Suspends WOTUS Implementation

WOTUS Attracts Strong Reactions

Michael Sanderson

Executive Director Maryland Association of Counties