Compliance and Enforcement Tribal Resources
EPA works to ensure that environmental compliance and enforcement programs designed to protect human health and the environment under federal environmental laws are implemented across the United States. This work is undertaken consistent with the federal government's trust and consultation responsibilities to federally-recognized tribes, government-to-government relationship with tribes, EPA's authorizing statutes and implementing regulations and policies.
EPA selected tribal compliance as a national enforcement and compliance priority for fiscal years 2005 through 2007. This is the first time EPA has selected tribal environmental issues as a national priority. As a priority, EPA will work with tribes to build capacity and increase direct implementation in Indian country and other tribal areas around three initial focus areas: drinking water, schools, and solid waste. A summary (PDF) (4 pp, 37K) of the Tribal Priority describing the goals to be met, approaches to reach these goals and measures to track progress toward the goals is available.
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EPA created a Resources Compendium for the National Tribal Compliance Assurance Priority that contains a list of links relevant to implementing the Tribal Priority, improving compliance assurance in Indian country, and building tribal environmental programs. These links provide information from a variety of sources on such issues as drinking water systems, school and solid waste management, as well as many other environmental issues arising Indian country. A downloadable Resource Compendium (PDF) (24 pp, 484K, January 27, 2005) of these links is also available.
Guidance for Issuing Federal EPA Inspector Credentials to Authorize Employees of State/Tribal Governments to Conduct Inspections on Behalf of EPA (PDF) (97 pp, 1.5MB, September 30, 2004) A key component of protecting the environment and public health is ensuring that the regulated community complies with environmental laws/regulations through on-site visits by qualified inspectors and a review of the information required to be submitted to the regulatory agency. EPA may conduct inspections or under certain circumstances, authorize tribal government employees to carry out inspections on EPA's behalf. The Guidance addresses the criteria and process for EPA regions to authorize tribal government employees to conduct inspections. Tribes may also conduct inspections under the authority of their own tribal codes.