USDA Information and Data

Environmental review for RD infrastructure projects (11/23/18)

Agency USDA RD
Action Final rule and proposed rule
Date 11/23/18

USDA RD wants to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of its environmental reviews for infrastructure. This does not apply to housing programs; it is relevant for broadband, electricity, water, sewer, etc. This rule change gives the RD Administrators limited flexibility to obligate funds for infrastructure projects prior to the completion of the environmental review process where the assurance that funds will be available is important for community health, safety, or economic development. The environmental review process must be completed prior to disbursement of any RD funds.
RD is posting this simultaneously as a “direct final rule” (URL above) and a proposed rule. It will be effective January 7, 2019, unless RD receives significant adverse comments or notice of an intent to submit a significant adverse comment by December 24, 2018.