September 1, 2021 - Special Public Notice - Public Information Announcement Tropical Storm/Hurricane Ida Storm Damage Repair
Winds, storm surge, and flooding from Tropical Storm/Hurricane Ida are currently projected in Maryland, the District of Columbia, and Pennsylvania and threaten to result in severe flooding and other storm related damage. It is anticipated that owners of damaged property caused by Ida will want to conduct repair activities in the near future. A Public Notice has been posted at https://www.nab.usace.army.mil/Missions/Regulatory/Public-Notices/ to inform property owners of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (Corps) permit requirements for storm damage repairs proposed in the State of Maryland, the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania within the Baltimore, Philadelphia, and Pittsburgh District’s regulatory geographic boundaries, the District of Columbia, and certain military installations of northern Virginia (i.e., Fort Belvoir, Fort Myer, and the Pentagon).
The Corps has federal jurisdiction over activities that include dredging or construction in, over, under, or affecting navigable waters of the United States, certain excavation activities, and the placement of dredged or fill material into waters of the United States (including wetlands). Such activities may require a Department of the Army permit, in accordance with Title 33 of the Code of Federal Regulations, Parts 320-332. Please note that waters of the United States include all navigable waters, rivers, perennial and intermittent streams, tributaries, drainage courses, lakes, ponds, impoundments, and wetlands, which meet applicable federal criteria, regardless of their size.
July 30, 2021 – EPA and Army Announce Next Steps for Crafting Enduring Definition of Waters of the United States
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Department of the Army (Army) have announced plans for upcoming community engagements to inform their efforts to revise the definition of “waters of the United States” (WOTUS). EPA and Army have stated a commitment to developing a reasonable, effective, and durable definition of WOTUS that protects public health, the environment, and downstream communities while supporting economic opportunity, agriculture, and other industries.
EPA and Army are announcing a series of engagement opportunities, including an opportunity for stakeholders and the public to provide written recommendations and a series of public meetings in August to hear perspectives on the rulemaking. In addition, the agencies are initiating Federalism and Tribal consultations for the foundational rule. The agencies also intend to host a series of dialogues with state and Tribal co-regulators this fall to discuss both rulemakings.
The full announcement can be found here: https://www.epa.gov/newsreleases/epa-and-army-announce-next-steps-crafting-enduring-definition-waters-united-states.
For more information on submitting written recommendations or to register for the public meetings, see www.epa.gov/wotus.
June 25, 2021 – Issuance of the Pennsylvania State Programmatic General Permit – 6.
The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Baltimore, Philadelphia, and Pittsburgh Districts announced the issuance of the Pennsylvania State Programmatic General Permit (PASPGP-6) on June 25, 2021. PASPGP-6 will be effective July 1, 2021, expires June 30, 2026, and replaces the PASPGP-5 streamlined review process in Pennsylvania, which expires on June 30, 2021. View the Public Notice or the full PASPGP-6.
June 9, 2021 - EPA and Army Statement of Intent to Revise the Definition of Waters of the United States
On 9 June 2021, the Environmental Protection Agency and Department of the Army announced their intent to revise the definition of “waters of the United States” (WOTUS), to better protect our nation’s vital water resources that support public health, environmental protection, agricultural activity, and economic growth. The EPA/Army press release can be accessed here: https://www.epa.gov/newsreleases/epa-army-announce-intent-revise-definition-wotus. Further details of the agencies’ plans, including opportunity for public participation can be accessed at: https://www.epa.gov/wotus/public-outreach-and-stakeholder-engagement-activities-forthcoming. For any questions, or additional information regarding either the Navigable Waters Protection Rule (NWPR) or WOTUS Rulemaking, see the EPA/Army website (https://www.epa.gov/wotus).
March 24, 2021 - Draft Changes to 2020 National Wetland Plant List.
The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE), as part of an interagency effort with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) and the U.S. Department of Agriculture Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS), is announcing the availability of the draft changes to the 2020 NWPL and its web address to solicit public comments. The public now has the opportunity to comment on the proposed changes to wetland indicator status ratings for five plant species in select regions and the addition of 22 new plant species to the NWPL. The Federal Register Notice (FRN) for the 2020 NWPL update can be found here: https://www.govinfo.gov/content/pkg/FR-2021-03-24/pdf/2021-05989.pdf. The public comment period ends on 24 May 2021. For more information click HERE.
March 5, 2021 - Announcement of Regional Conditions for 16 of the 2021 Nationwide Permits
On March 5, 2021, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Baltimore District, announced the Regional Conditions for 16 of the 2021 Nationwide Permits announced earlier this year. View the Public Notice along with the Regional Conditions for Maryland, the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, and the District of Columbia.
January 13, 2021 - Reissuance of 12 Nationwide Permits
On January 13, 2021, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers published a final rule in the Federal Register (86 FR 2744) announcing the reissuance of 12 existing nationwide permits (NWPs) and four new NWPs, as well as the reissuance of NWP general conditions and definitions with some modifications. These 16 NWPs will go into effect on March 15, 2021, and will expire on March 14, 2026. View the Public Notice of the reissuance announcement, including the full list of new and reissued Nationwide Permits.
November 23, 2020 - Maryland State Programmatic General Permit - 6 Public Notice Released for Public Comment
The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Baltimore District, released for public comment their proposal to issue Maryland State Programmatic General Permit – 6 (MDSPGP-6) on November 23, 2020. This permit would serve to replace the MDSPGP-5 after it expires September 30, 2021, would be valid for 5 years, and applies to activities proposed in waters of the United States, including navigable waters, streams, rivers, other open waters and wetlands within Maryland. The public comment period ends on December 23, 2020. View the proposed MDSPGP-6, including the proposed modifications, the issued Public Notice, and information on how to comment.
September 30, 2020 - Proposed Regional Conditions and Suspensions for the proposal to reissue the Nationwide Permits (NWPs) applicable to the Pennsylvania, Maryland, District of Columbia, and Fort Belvoir, Fort Myer and the Pentagon in Virginia.
The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Baltimore, Philadelphia, and Pittsburgh Districts jointly issued the draft regional conditions and proposed suspensions for the proposal to reissue the Nationwide Permits (NWPs) applicable to Pennsylvania, Maryland, District of Columbia, and Fort Belvoir, Fort Myer and the Pentagon in Virginia. The public comment period ends on November 16, 2020. The districts' public notice is available at https://www.nab.usace.army.mil/Missions/Regulatory/Public-Notices/.
September 15, 2020-Renew and Revision of 52 Nationwide Permits
On September 15, 2020, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers announced that it has prepared its proposal to renew and revise 52 nationwide permits for work in wetlands and other waters that are regulated by Section 404 of the Clean Water Act and/or Section 10 of the Rivers and Harbors Act of 1899. The proposal was published in the Federal Register. The public comment period ends on November 16, 2020. The proposed rule is available through the Federal Register web site.
September 14, 2020 - Effective date of the Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ) rule to update the regulations implementing the procedural provisions of NEPA
On July 16, 2020, the Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ) issued a final rule to update its regulations for Federal agencies to implement the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA). The final rule became effective on September 14, 2020. Additional information about the final rule and its development is available on the NEPA website at https://ceq.doe.gov/laws-regulations/regulations.html. The Corps of Engineers is in the process of updating its NEPA implementing regulations for the Regulatory Program (33 CFR Part 325, Appendix B) to comport with CEQ’s updated rule. The Corps’ proposed rule is scheduled to be published in the Federal Register for comments during the first quarter of CY2021.
September 11, 2020 - EPA finalized the “Clean Water Act Section 401 Certification Rule”
On June 1, 2020, EPA finalized the "Clean Water Act Section 401 Certification Rule" to implement the water quality certification process consistent with the text and structure of the CWA. The final rule became effective on September 11, 2020. See Docket ID No. EPA-HQ-OW-2019-0405 for additional information.
The final rule is available through the Federal Register website at: https://www.epa.gov/sites/production/files/2020-07/documents/clean_water_act_section_401_certification_rule.pdf
Additional information is available on the EPA’s website at: https://www.epa.gov/cwa-401/statutory-and-regulatory-requirements-cwa-section-401-certification
September 4, 2020-Pennsylvania State Programmatic General Permit - 6 Public Notice Released for Public Comment
The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Baltimore, Philadelphia, and Pittsburgh districts, jointly released for public comment their proposal to issue Pennsylvania State Programmatic General Permit – 6 (PASPGP-6) September 4, 2020. This permit would serve to replace the PASPGP-5 after it expires
June 30, 2021, would be valid for 5 years, and applies to activities proposed in waters of the United States, including jurisdictional navigable waters, streams, rivers, other open waters and wetlands within Pennsylvania. View the proposed PASPGP-6, including the proposed modifications, the issued Public Notice, and information on how to comment.
September 1, 2020-Chesapeake Bay Total Maximum Daily Load Regional General Permit Re-issued
The Baltimore District, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers was re-issued the Chesapeake Bay Total Maximum Daily Load Regional General Permit (TMDL RGP) with revisions authorizing activities in waters of the U.S., including jurisdictional wetlands that are part of an acceptable watershed strategy, such as a Chesapeake Bay TMDL Watershed Implementation Plan (WIP). More information can be found here.
May 18, 2020 - 2018 National Wetland Plant List (NWPL) Final Update
The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (Corps), as part of an interagency effort with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) and the U.S. Department of Agriculture Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS), is announcing the availability of the final 2018 National Wetland Plant List (NWPL). The Federal Register Notice for the 2018 NWPL update was posted on 18 May 2020 and can be found here: https://www.govinfo.gov/content/pkg/FR-2020-05-18/pdf/2020-10630.pdf.
The NWPL provides plant species indicator status ratings, which are used in determining whether the hydrophytic vegetation factor is met when conducting wetland delineations under the Clean Water Act. The list is effective as of May 18, 2020 and will be used in any wetland delineations performed after this date. Delineations completed prior to this date may still use the 2016 NWPL. The final NWPL is available at http://wetland-plants.usace.army.mil/. State, regional, and national lists can also be downloaded from this site.
April 27, 2020 - Army Corps continues processing permit applications, modifies Regulatory operations in Maryland, Pennsylvania, DC The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Baltimore District, has incorporated preventative measures due to the COVID-19 pandemic at its Regulatory Program offices to minimize potential exposure of Corps personnel, permit applicants and the general public, including limiting some day-to-day operations and postponing Corps-hosted events, office meetings and public engagements. View associated news release for more information.
April 21, 2020 - EPA's and Army’s Navigable Waters Protection Rule: Definition of “Waters of the United States On April 21, 2020, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Department of the Army’s Navigable Waters Protection Rule: Definition of “Waters of the United States” was published in the Federal Register. This final rule establishes the scope of federal regulatory authority under the Clean Water Act. The Navigable Waters Protection Rule includes four simple categories of jurisdictional waters and provides specific exclusions for many water features that traditionally have not been regulated. The final rule will become effective on June 22, 2020. The published version is 93 pages, and the citation is: 85 FR 22250. Additional information about the rule can be found on EPA’s website. Army Corps Headquarters posted an announcement for the publication of the rule on their Regulatory webpage.