The Department of the Army (DA) Regulatory Program is one of the oldest programs in the federal government. Initially, the Regulatory Division served a fairly simple, straightforward purpose: To protect and maintain the navigable capacity of the Nation's waters, under Section 10 of the River and Harbors Act of 1899. In 1972, the Clean Water Act (Act) was signed into law and the DA was directed to administer Section 404 of the Act, which regulates the discharge of dredged and/or fill material into waters of the United States. In 1977, the Corps of Engineers jurisdiction was increased to include wetlands as part of the Waters of the US.
The Regulatory Program is committed to protecting the Nation's aquatic resources and navigation capacity, while allowing reasonable development through fair and balanced decisions. Buffalo District Regulators are dedicated to protecting New York and Ohio's federal waters while allowing reasonable and necessary development to move forward through evaluation of permit applications for essentially all construction activities that occur in the Nation's waters, including wetlands.