Advocacy Comments on Definition of “Waters of the United States”- Recodification of Pre-Existing Rules
September 27, 2017
On July 27, 2017 the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and Army Corps of Engineers (Corps) published a proposed rule titled: Definition of “Waters of the United States”-Recodification of Pre-Existing Rules. The proposed rule is the first in a two-step process to revise the definition of “waters of the United States.” This first step proposes to rescind the definition of “waters of the United States” as promulgated in the 2015 Clean Water Rule, and instead apply the definition of “waters of the United States” as it existed before the 2015 rule. The Office of Advocacy (Advocacy) applauds EPA and the Corps’ efforts to revise the definition of “waters of the United States” by first rescinding the 2015 rule thereby providing certainty to small business as to the current definition, and to then revise the definition to ensure that it is clear and not overly broad. Advocacy urges EPA and the Corps in the second step of the rulemaking to consider the impacts to small business when revising the definition, and conduct a proper and thorough regulatory flexibility analysis when writing the rule.