Justice Alito called EPA’s position “outrageous.” This was one of the many barbs aimed at EPA during oral argument in Sackett v. EPA, a case where property owners seek pre-enforcement judicial review of an EPA administrative order.
The Sacketts wanted to build a home on a small lot (0.63 acres) in a built-up residential subdivision along a lake. After they graded the lot, EPA issued an administrative order against them claiming the Sacketts filled in jurisdictional wetlands without a permit in violation of Section 404 of the Clean Water Act (CWA). When the Sacketts asked to be heard on the administrative order, EPA refused. This left the Sacketts with two unattractive options.
To learn more, please read Bill Wagner's recent blog post on Commonground.