Revised LCR Actions

OMB Reviewing EPA Actions Regarding Revised LCR.  The Association of State Drinking Water Administrators (ASDWA) reported that this past Friday, March 5, 2021, the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) submitted two “actions” for review to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) regarding the Revised Lead and Copper Rule (LCR).  At the present time we don’t know the content of what was submitted to OMB.

Background.  On January 15, 2021 EPA published the final Revised LCR in the Federal Register.  The effective date of the Revised LCR is March 16, 2021.  On January 20, 2021 the Biden Administration issued a Regulatory Freeze memo.  The Regulatory Freeze memo indicated in part that any regulation published in the Federal Register within the previous 60 days that has not yet taken effect – the responsible federal Agency should consider postponing the rule’s effective dates for 60 days to allow for review.   And consider opening up the regulation for additional public comment.  It is possible that the material OMB is currently reviewing for the Revised LCR includes an extension of the effective date of the Revised LCR.

Petition for Review of the Revised LCR.  On March 1, 2021 the Attorney Generals of nine States (New York, California, Illinois, Maryland, Minnesota, New Jersey, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Wisconsin) and the District of Columbia submitted a petition to the District Court of Appeals in DC, for review of the Revised LCR (Revised LCR State Petitioners’ Petition for Review).  The brief cover reads in part “State Petitioners seek a determination by this Court pursuant to section 1412(b)(9) of the Safe Drinking Water Act, 42 U.S.C. § 300g-1(b)(9), and section 10(e) of the Administrative Procedure Act, 5 U.S.C. § 706, that certain aspects of the rule are unlawful and therefore must be vacated.”

Safe Drinking Water Act Section 1412(b)(9) – “REVIEW AND REVISION.—The Administrator shall, not less often than every 6 years, review and revise, as appropriate, each national primary drinking water regulation promulgated under this title. Any revision of a national primary drinking water regulation shall be promulgated in accordance with this section, except that each revision shall maintain, or provide for greater, protection of the health of persons.”