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U.S. Supreme Court Takes up Case to Determine whether Home Builders' Land Was Properly Held to Be "W

U.S. Supreme Court Takes up Case to Determine whether Home Builders' Land Was Properly Held to Be "Wetlands"
January 25, 2022 by Louie Jorczak , Partner | Amy Berg, Associate
The United States Supreme Court on Monday agreed to hear an important water protection case concerning protected wetlands, which will likely be heard during the Court’s term starting in October. 

The case Sackett v. EPA involves a 15-year battle by the Sacketts to build a house in Idaho on land that federal regulators concluded is protected wetlands. The Sacketts seek to overturn a Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals ruling and narrowly define water of the United States, or WOTUS, a term establishing federal jurisdiction under the Clean Water Act. Resolution of this case could potentially resolve the ongoing question about the scope of WOTUS following the Rapanos v. United States decision in 2006. 

The outcome of this case is also expected to impact the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the Department of the Army’s proposed rule to revise WOTUS and expand the scope of federally protected waters. The proposed rule was published on December 7, 2021, and the comment period is now open and will close on February 7, 2022. 

Environmental rules and regulations, and interpretations of them, change rapidly, and can have a significant impact on businesses and property owners. When entering into any property transaction or change in use, it is important to understand how these regulations will be applied, and legal counsel can guide you through that process. 

Louie Jorczak and Amy Berg are attorneys in Ice Miller's Real Estate and Environmental Group with experience dealing with Indiana State and Federal environmental regulations on behalf of their real estate clients. 

This publication is intended for general information purposes only and does not and is not intended to constitute legal advice. The reader should consult with legal counsel to determine how laws or decisions discussed herein apply to the reader's specific circumstances.

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