The State Water Resources Control Board willaccept public comments onproposed amendments to the Water Quality Enforcement Policy until April 28, 2023. The State Water Board will hold a public hearing to receive written and/or oral comments on April 18, 2023.
TheEnforcement Policy provides guidance that enables Water Boards staff to expend itslimited resources inways that openly address the greatest needs, deter harmfulconduct, protect the public, and achieve maximum water quality benefits. The Enforcement Policy was last amended in 2017.
The amendments would clarify certain principles that are central to the EnforcementPolicy, helping to ensure more transparent and consistent application of the statutoryfactors outlined in California Water Code (Water Code) sections 13327 and 13385, subdivision (e) that the Water Boards must consider when assessing a civil liability.
The amendments would also establish a template for procedures for evidentiary hearings toconsider imposition of administrative civil liability, re–organize several sections toimprove efficiency and flow, and add clarifications to a variety of provisions to enhancetransparency to the Water Boards’ enforcement process and penalty methodology application. Non–substantive technical amendments would increase comprehensibility.