"The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and states are implementing a federally mandated program for controlling stormwater discharges from industrial facilities and municipalities. Large cities and most industry sources are subject to rules issued in 1990, and EPA issued permit rules to cover smaller cities and other industrial sources and construction sites in 1999. Because of the large number of affected sources and deadline changes that led to confusion, numerous questions have arisen about this program. Impacts and costs of the program's requirements, especially on cities, are a continuing concern. The 109th Congress enacted omnibus energy legislation (P.L. 109-58, the Energy Policy Act of 2005) that included a provision giving the oil and gas industry regulatory relief from some stormwater control requirements. In May 2008, a federal court vacated an EPA rule implementing this provision. EPA intends to issue a revised rule that repeals the one that was vacated by the court and codifies the statutory exemption in P.L. 109-58, but the agency does not have a specific schedule for doing so. In the 111th Congress, the House passed a bill that included a provision that would repeal the exemption in P.L. 109-58, but the Senate took no action. Similar legislation has been introduced in the 113th Congress (H.R. 1175). Congress often looks to federal agencies to lead or test new policy approaches, a fact reflected in legislation enacted in the 110th Congress."
CRS Report for Congress, 97-290