On August 28th, the new "Waters of the U.S." regulations went into effect. The regulations are expansive in increasing the jurisdiction of the U.S. over waterways throughout the nation. For more information on the regulation, click here.
NAHB and many other industry groups and states (including Ohio) have filed lawsuits to prevent the implementation of the regulations. Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine filed a suit in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Ohio on behalf of Ohio and Michigan. It is still pending.
However, a similar lawsuit in the U.S. District Court in North Dakota was successful in obtaining an injunction impacting 13 states. Ohio is not one of those states. The EPA has indicated that they are going to proceed in implementing the rules in states not under the North Dakota ruling.
It is still unclear how this rule will be implemented in our region. It has been widely reported that the Army Corps of Engineers did not sign off on the expansion of the definition.
The HBA will host a forum on October 6th for builders and developers to learn about the rules and obtain guidance on how to deal with them. Vince Messerly from the Streams + Wetlands Foundation will present. Register here.