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EPA/OW RIN: 2040-AF88 Publication ID: Spring 2020 
Title: Clean Water Act Section 404(c) Regulatory Revision 

Section 404 of the Clean Water Act (CWA) authorizes the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (Corps) or an approved State or Tribe to issue permits for discharges of dredged or fill material at specified sites in waters of the United States. Section 404(c) of the Clean Water Act authorizes the EPA Administrator "to prohibit the specification (including withdrawal of the specification) of any defined area as a disposal site" as well as to "deny or restrict the use of any defined area for specification (including the withdrawal of specification) as a disposal site . . . whenever he determines, after notice and opportunity for public hearings, that the discharge of such materials into such area will have an unacceptable adverse effect on municipal water supplies, shellfish beds and fishery areas (including spawning and breeding areas), wildlife, or recreational areas." The current regulations include four steps for when the EPA takes an action under CWA section 404(c): 1) the Regional Administrator (RA) informs the Corps and 404 permit applicant that the EPA is initiating the 404(c) process to prohibit, restrict, deny or withdraw a specification or the use of an area for discharge of dredged or fill material in waters of the United States; 2) the RA requests public comment on the EPA's proposed determination to take the specified action related to the discharge at the defined site(s); 3) the RA provides a recommended determination to the EPA Administrator; and 4) the EPA Administrator prepares a final determination and communicates the findings to the Corps and applicant. This rulemaking will consider changes to the EPA's CWA section 404(c) review process that would govern the future use of the EPA's CWA section 404(c) authority.

Agency: Environmental Protection Agency(EPA)  Priority: Other Significant 
RIN Status: Previously published in the Unified Agenda Agenda Stage of Rulemaking: Proposed Rule Stage 
Major: No  Unfunded Mandates: No 
EO 13771 Designation: Deregulatory 
CFR Citation: 40 CFR 230   
Legal Authority: 33 U.S.C. 1251 et seq., Clean Water Act   
Legal Deadline:  None
Action Date FR Cite
NPRM  08/00/2020 
Final Rule  03/00/2021 
Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required: No  Government Levels Affected: None 
Small Entities Affected: No  Federalism: No 
Included in the Regulatory Plan: No 
RIN Data Printed in the FR: No 
Agency Contact:
Palmer Hough
Environmental Protection Agency
Office of Water
Mail Code 4502T, 1200 Pennsylvania Avenue NW,
Washington , DC 20460
Phone:202 566-1374

Russell Kaiser
Environmental Protection Agency
Office of Water
1200 Pennsylvania Ave NW,
Washington, DC 20460
Phone:202 566-0963