AGC spoke out against proposed guidelines that would make establishing new mitigation banks more onerous. The draft guidelines would make investment in mitigation less attractive and increase the cost of projects that rely on robust mitigation banks to comply with legal requirements and stay on budget. Furthermore, provisions in the proposed guidelines go beyond what is required by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ 2008 Mitigation Rule and work against recent executive orders that prioritize regulatory reform and environmental streamlining. Proposed by the Fort Worth District of the USACE, AGC is concerned that the guidelines may be adopted by other districts.
AGC’s top three concerns with the proposed guidelines are the permanent retirement of subsurface mineral rights, overly stringent financial assurance requirements, and severely low limits on invasive species. All of which would reduce available mitigation banks and negatively impact Clean Water Act Section 404 permitting. Read more in AGC’s joint comments on the Proposed Additional Banking Guidelines Covering Specific Elements for the Establishment of New Mitigation Banks in the Fort Worth District of the USACE.