The following is a list of recent additions/changes/news to our web. Whenever we publish news, submit a status report, or add anything else to our web, we'll put a notice here. For historical interest, we keep all the items. The most recent changes are listed first.
1) A guidance document was published by US EPA in 2005 that contains most of what was in the original SSO Rule concerning CMOM. By referring to it as a "guidance" document, it avoided the rule-making process that would have spelled certain death during the Bush administration.
2) Individual US EPA regional offices - who have the authority to act
independently of US EPA Headquarters - have taken action to create and
enforce CMOM regulations in different parts of the country. Some states that
have regulatory authority delegated to them by US EPA have also taken action
to develop CMOM requirements for the collection system agencies under their
jurisdiction. An example of one of the most wide-ranging state actions is
California "Collection Systems Waste Discharge Requirements".
Of note, cloned pieces of the original CMOM language as well as the later guidance document have found their way into the regulatory language of both the US EPA regional offices and the states that have taken action.
This delay is likely to cause the rule to not be released for publication until sometime in the Fall of 2003, with publication in the Federal Register most likely in the Spring of 2004.
Following the review by OMB, the SSO rule would be scheduled for comment in the Federal Register, most likely in the Spring of 2003. There is considerable consensus for moving ahead with publishing the rule even though there are continuing disagreements in the industry about portions of the rule, specifically the affirmative defense and stormwater blending proposals. Publishing the rule will at least allow undisputed portions to be implemented including CMOM and the permitting of satellite collection systems.
The contents of a note from Kevin Weiss at EPA reads as follows:
"I am pleased to announce that Tracy Mehan, the Assistant Administrator for the Office of Water, has given OWM (Office of Water Management, ed.) the go ahead and work on the SSO/CMOM NPRM. As you know, Administrator Browner signed a draft SSO NPRM on January 4, 2001. However, in accordance with the memorandum of January 20, 2001, from the Assistant to the President and Chief of Staff, entitled A Regulatory Review Plan,@ published in the Federal Register on January 24, 2001, 66 FR 7701, EPA withdrew the SSO NPRM from the office of Federal Register to give the Administrator an opportunity to review it.
Since January, EPA has received a number of comments on the January, 2001 draft NPRM. Tracy Mehan has directed OWM to develop an SSO/CMOM NPRM that:
- proposes regulations consistent with those recommended by the SSO Federal Advisory Subcommittee on October, 1999;
- summarizes in the preamble the comments received since January, 2001; and
- provides preamble discussion regarding those comments.
I continue to strongly believe that broad-based NPDES permit requirements for CMOM, reporting, record keeping and public notice for SSOs as well as expanding NPDES program to municipal satellite collection systems will ultimately have a dramatic impact on changing the way the nation invests in its sewer infrastructure, which in turn will improve the performance of these systems and lead to reduced health risks.
We will keep you posted as we work through this effort."