Yesterday, Susan Bodine, EPA’s Assistant Administrator for the Office of Enforcement and Compliance Assurance (OECA), issued final guidance for EPA regions regarding interactions between the Agency and the states in civil enforcement and compliance assurance matters. Under the new guidance, EPA will generally defer to a state as having primary jurisdiction over inspections and enforcement, but it also sets out a number of important exceptions where EPA may take direct action. The final guidance replaces previous interim guidance issued in January 2018.
The guidance is split into three parts and expands upon the interim guidance by providing additional procedures and outlining various principles and approaches for coordination between EPA regions and states. The changes are the result of input from EPA regional offices, states, and a workgroup on compliance assurance that EPA and the Environmental Council of States convened in September of 2017.