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EPA Records Schedule 207

Status: (to be superseded) Final, 12/31/2012

Title: Enforcement Action Files

Program: All Programs, with exceptions

Applicability: Agency-wide

Function: 108-025-08 - Compliance and Enforcement

NARA Disposal Authority:

This schedule authorizes the disposition of the record copy in any media (media neutral), excluding any records already in electronic form. Records designated for permanent retention must be transferred to the National Archives in accordance with NARA standards at the time of transfer.

Description:

Includes all cases referred to Office of Regional Counsel or other offices with enforcement authority, for action against a pollution source or discharger. Includes correspondence, meeting documentation, inspections, field notebooks, evaluations, documentation of administrative actions including notices of violation, notices of deficiency, information requests, warning letters, administrative compliance orders, documentation of civil and criminal actions, corrective action orders, attorney work products, case summaries, pleadings, state and local enforcement records, settlement documents including consent decrees, discovery requests, and notices of intent to sue.

Excludes: Superfund site-specific and oil spill site-specific enforcement actions scheduled as EPA 025 and EPA 480, respectively.

Disposition Instructions:

Item a: Administrative case files, whether a formal enforcement action is initiated or not

Item b: Judicial case files where routine legal actions are required

Item c(1): Landmark or precedent cases - Nonelectronic

Includes cases as designated by the Regional Administrator's designee.

Item c(2): Landmark or precedent cases - Electronic

Includes cases as designated by the Regional Administrator's designee.

Item c(3): Landmark or precedent cases - Electronic copy of records transferred to the National Archives

Includes cases as designated by the Regional Administrator's designee.

Guidance:

The unit with enforcement authority is responsible for maintaining the record copy and implementing the disposition, including selecting landmark cases for recommendation to the Regional Administrator or the Regional Administrator's designee. Examples of possible landmark cases would be cases that may have the largest award, or the first case of the kind or some other special distinction, or results in a legal precedent. A landmark case may establish or affirm Agency policy with respect to environmental actions of national importance (e.g., banning a hazardous substance) or other actions affecting EPA's relationship with an entire industry or major pollution source.

Records may include financial assurance documents, "ability to pay" documents, and negotiable instruments such as letters of credit and stock certificates. Original negotiable instruments must be protected and kept in fireproofed locked containers such as a safe. Copies of the negotiable instruments may be kept in the related files.

Copies of these records incorporated into other files (e.g., with site or facility files) are to be retained according to the disposition instructions for the records they support

Superfund site-specific and oil-site specific enforcement actions are covered by EPA 025 and EPA 480, respectively. See EPA 205 for permits for programs other than RCRA and EPA 478 for RCRA. See EPA 206 for RCRA corrective actions. Administrative records relating to permits are covered in EPA 210. Compliance files are to be retained in accordance with EPA 211. Criminal investigation records are covered in EPA 208 and criminal enforcement counsel in EPA 683.

Microform copies are to be produced in accordance with standards in 36 CFR 1230.10 and 1230.20. It is recommended that the office retain a silver as well as a diazo set of microformed records on site to simplify making copies.

Records containing sensitive information must be shredded or otherwise definitively destroyed to protect confidentiality.

Reasons for Disposition:

Disposition instructions have been rewritten as media neutral to allow for maintaining the record copy in EPA's electronic recordkeeping system. The retention is unchanged.

The following change was made in the 12/31/2012 version:

The following change was made in the 01/31/2009 version:

The following changes were made in the 02/29/2008 version:

Item d for electronic copies created with word processing and electronic mail applications was deleted pursuant to NARA Bulletin 2006-04.

Custodians:

Multiple units

Related Schedules:

EPA 025, EPA 205, EPA 206, EPA 208, EPA 210, EPA 211, EPA 478, EPA 480, EPA 683

Previous NARA Disposal Authority:

NC1-412-76-1/IV/3 (TN28-D4/3), NC1-412-85-20/5, N1-412-95-7/5

Entry: 02/24/1992

EPA Approval: 09/18/2006

NARA Approval: 01/26/2007

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