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Recent Developments in Federal Wetlands Law: Part III

August 1996

Citation: ELR 10399

Author: Margaret N. Strand

Editors' Summary: This Article is the last in a three-part series intended to supplement Federal Wetlands Law, a primer that ELR published in 1993 and subsequently incorporated into the Wetlands Deskbook. The Article, which refers to the primer but stands on its own, focuses primarily on where wetlands law has changed since the primer's publication. The Article first addresses judicial review of agency wetlands decisions, including a proposed administrative appeal process for U.S. Army Corps of Engineers' permit decisions and wetlands jurisdictional determinations. Next, the Article examines the takings issue, focusing on specific wetlands decisions and issues, and highlighting relevant takings decisions in other contexts. The Article then discusses state programs, including federal delegation of Clean Water Act (CWA) § 404 program administration and a report on the Alaska Wetlands Initiative, a program designed to address special issues involving Alaskan wetlands. Finally, the Article discusses recent changes to non-CWA wetland programs. In particular, it provides a breakdown of how the 1996 amendments to the Farm Bill have changed programs dealing with agricultural wetlands.

Ms. Strand is a partner in the Washington, D.C., office of Bayh, Connaughton & Malone, where she practices environmental litigation and counseling. She is a member of the National Academy of Sciences' Committee on Wetland Characterization and Board on Environmental Studies and Toxicology. The author gratefully acknowledges the assistance of Barbara J. Bergman of Bayh, Connaughton & Malone in the preparation of this Article.