Public Outreach and Stakeholder Engagement Activities
On June 9, 2021, EPA and the Department of the Army announced their intention to revise the definition of WOTUS to better protect our nation's water resources. This process includes two rulemakings: a foundational rule to restore longstanding protections, and an anticipated second rule that builds on that regulatory foundation. The Agencies intend to engage with state and tribal co-regulators and the public to inform these two rulemakings.
On July 30, 2021, the agencies announced stakeholder engagement opportunities, including the agencies’ intent to host ten regionally focused roundtables. On October 13, 2021, EPA and Army announced a process for stakeholders to submit nomination letters for a slate of nominees to potentially be selected for one of these geographically focused roundtables. Each regionally focused roundtables will allow stakeholders with a range of perspectives to engage and discuss their experiences with definitions of WOTUS, including challenges and opportunities within their geographic areas. The roundtables will also provide an opportunity for the participants to discuss geographic similarities and differences, particular water resources that are characteristic of or unique to each region, and site-specific feedback about implementation.
The agencies request that organizers that would like to be considered for a roundtable submit their self-nomination letter via email to WOTUSemail@example.com no later than November 3, 2021.
The roundtables will take place in December 2021 and potentially January 2022.
On July 30, 2021, the Agencies announced a schedule for initial public meetings to hear from interested stakeholders on their perspectives on defining "waters of the United States" and how to implement that definition as the agencies pursue this process. The public meetings were held as web conferences in August and September 2021.
The agencies also accepted written recommendations from members of the public. Written recommendations sent to the docket will be posted on Regulations.gov to Docket ID No. EPA-HQ-OW-2021-0328 . The docket closed on September 3, 2021.
Federalism and Tribal Consultation
For more information regarding federalism and tribal consultation, please contact CWAwotus@epa.gov. Additional information about tribal consultation may also be found at EPA's Tribal Consultation Opportunities Tracking System website.