In the June 16, 2021 Federal Register, copy enclosed ( Fed Reg_LCRR Delay_2021-06-16), EPA published the final rule delaying the effective date of the Revised Lead and Copper Rule (LCRR) until December 16, 2021. The enclosed Federal Register notice also formally delays the LCRR compliance date from January 16, 2024 to October 16, 2024.
The enclosed notice includes a 5-page description of EPA’s current thinking (see “Purpose of the Regulatory Action,” page 31940) with regard to the LCRR. Here is a quote from that section describing the Agency’s intent over the next several months:
“EPA will engage with stakeholders during this time period to evaluate the rule and determine whether to initiate a process to revise components of the rule. If EPA decides to withdraw the LCRR, the agency will propose, take comment on, and issue a withdrawal prior to December 16, 2021. If EPA decides it is appropriate to modify the LCRR, it will consider whether those modifications warrant further extensions to compliance dates for the requirements that will be modified to provide time to promulgate those revisions before water systems and states must take actions to comply. If EPA decides to revise the LCRR, the agency will follow the requirements of the SDWA and other applicable statues….”
The final LCRR was published on January 15, 2021. On January 20, 2021 the Biden Administration issued a Regulatory Freeze to allow Federal agencies an opportunity to review recent regulations. On March 12, 2021 EPA published two Federal Register notices that were intended to allow EPA time to continue its review of the LCRR and “conduct important consultations with affected parties.” The first Federal Register notice delayed the effective date of the LCRR from March 16, 2021 to June 17, 2021. The second Federal Register notice published on March 12, 2021 proposed to extend the effective date from June 17, 2021 until December 16, 2021 and also proposed to delay the LCRR compliance deadline from January 16, 2024 to October 16, 2024. The second Federal Register notice was open for a 30-day public comment period before publication of the final version in today’s Federal Register.