The EPA announced today that it is delaying the effective date of all regulations that have been published in the Federal Register but are not yet effective. There are 30 such regulations, all of which are now scheduled to become effective on March 21, 2017. The action was taken to comply with the White House’s “Regulatory Freeze Pending Review” memorandum, which was issued to the heads of all executive departments on the day President Trump was inaugurated.
The 60 day period “is necessary to give Agency officials the opportunity for further review and consideration of new regulations,” according to the rule.
The Agency’s action was taken without public comment pursuant to the good cause exceptions to the Administrative Procedures Act. 5 U.S.C. §553(b)(B) allows the administration to forgo regular notice and comment procedures when they are “impracticable, unnecessary, or contrary to the public interest.”
The rule adding a Subsurface Intrusion (SsI) component to the CERCLA Hazard Ranking System (HRS), which we wrote on two weeks ago, is among those affected by this action. It was set to become effective on February 8, 2017.
The Agency specifically left open the possibility of delaying implementation of some affected regulations beyond March 21, 2017.