1625-0015 Stat/Authority


Bridge Permit Application Guide (BPAG)

1625-0015 Stat/Authority

OMB: 1625-0015

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Administration of Barack Obama, 2012
Executive Order 13604—Improving Performance of Federal Permitting and
Review of Infrastructure Projects
March 22, 2012
By the authority vested in me as President by the Constitution and the laws of the United
States of America, and in order to significantly reduce the aggregate time required to make
decisions in the permitting and review of infrastructure projects by the Federal Government,
while improving environmental and community outcomes, it is hereby ordered as follows:
Section 1. Policy. (a) To maintain our Nation's competitive edge and ensure an economy
built to last, the United States must have fast, reliable, resilient, and environmentally sound
means of moving people, goods, energy, and information. In a global economy, we will
compete for the world's investments based in significant part on the quality of our
infrastructure. Investing in the Nation's infrastructure provides immediate and long-term
economic benefits for local communities and the Nation as a whole.
The quality of our Nation's infrastructure depends in critical part on Federal permitting
and review processes, including planning, approval, and consultation processes. These
processes inform decision-makers and affected communities about the potential benefits and
impacts of proposed infrastructure projects, and ensure that projects are designed, built, and
maintained in a manner that is consistent with protecting our public health, welfare, safety,
national security, and environment. Reviews and approvals of infrastructure projects can be
delayed due to many factors beyond the control of the Federal Government, such as poor
project design, incomplete applications, uncertain funding, or multiple reviews and approvals
by State, local, tribal, or other jurisdictions. Given these factors, it is critical that executive
departments and agencies (agencies) take all steps within their authority, consistent with
available resources, to execute Federal permitting and review processes with maximum
efficiency and effectiveness, ensuring the health, safety, and security of communities and the
environment while supporting vital economic growth.
To achieve that objective, our Federal permitting and review processes must provide a
transparent, consistent, and predictable path for both project sponsors and affected
communities. They must ensure that agencies set and adhere to timelines and schedules for
completion of reviews, set clear permitting performance goals, and track progress against those
goals. They must encourage early collaboration among agencies, project sponsors, and affected
stakeholders in order to incorporate and address their interests and minimize delays. They
must provide for transparency and accountability by utilizing cost-effective information
technology to collect and disseminate information about individual projects and agency
performance, so that the priorities and concerns of all our citizens are considered. They must
rely upon early and active consultation with State, local, and tribal governments to avoid
conflicts or duplication of effort, resolve concerns, and allow for concurrent rather than
sequential reviews. They must recognize the critical role project sponsors play in assuring the
timely and cost-effective review of projects by providing complete information and analysis and
by supporting, as appropriate, the costs associated with review. And, they must enable agencies
to share priorities, work collaboratively and concurrently to advance reviews and permitting
decisions, and facilitate the resolution of disputes at all levels of agency organization.


Each of these elements must be incorporated into routine agency practice to provide
demonstrable improvements in the performance of Federal infrastructure permitting and
review processes, including lower costs, more timely decisions, and a healthier and cleaner
environment. Also, these elements must be integrated into project planning processes so that
projects are designed appropriately to avoid, to the extent practicable, adverse impacts on
public health, security, historic properties and other cultural resources, and the environment,
and to minimize or mitigate impacts that may occur. Permitting and review process
improvements that have proven effective must be expanded and institutionalized.
(b) In advancing this policy, this order expands upon efforts undertaken pursuant to
Executive Order 13580 of July 12, 2011 (Interagency Working Group on Coordination of
Domestic Energy Development and Permitting in Alaska), Executive Order 13563 of January
18, 2011 (Improving Regulation and Regulatory Review), and my memorandum of August 31,
2011 (Speeding Infrastructure Development Through More Efficient and Effective Permitting
and Environmental Review), as well as other ongoing efforts.
Sec. 2. Steering Committee on Federal Infrastructure Permitting and Review Process
Improvement. There is established a Steering Committee on Federal Infrastructure Permitting
and Review Process Improvement (Steering Committee), to be chaired by the Chief
Performance Officer (CPO), in consultation with the Chair of the Council on Environmental
Quality (CEQ).
(a) Infrastructure Projects Covered by this Order. The Steering Committee shall facilitate
improvements in Federal permitting and review processes for infrastructure projects in sectors
including surface transportation, aviation, ports and waterways, water resource projects,
renewable energy generation, electricity transmission, broadband, pipelines, and other such
sectors as determined by the Steering Committee.
(b) Membership. Each of the following agencies (Member Agencies) shall be represented
on the Steering Committee by a Deputy Secretary or equivalent officer of the United States:
(i) the Department of Defense;
(ii) the Department of the Interior;
(iii) the Department of Agriculture;
(iv) the Department of Commerce;
(v) the Department of Transportation;
(vi) the Department of Energy;
(vii) the Department of Homeland Security;
(viii) the Environmental Protection Agency;
(ix) the Advisory Council on Historic Preservation;
(x) the Department of the Army; and
(xi) such other agencies or offices as the CPO may invite to participate.
(c) Projects of National or Regional Significance. In furtherance of the policies of this
order, the Member Agencies shall coordinate and consult with each other to select, submit to
the CPO by April 30, 2012, and periodically update thereafter, a list of infrastructure projects
of national or regional significance that will have their status tracked on the online Federal


Infrastructure Projects Dashboard (Dashboard) created pursuant to my memorandum of
August 31, 2011.
(d) Responsibilities of the Steering Committee. The Steering Committee shall:
(i) develop a Federal Permitting and Review Performance Plan (Federal Plan), as
described in section 3(a) of this order;
(ii) implement the Federal Plan and coordinate resolution of disputes among
Member Agencies relating to implementation of the Federal Plan; and
(iii) coordinate and consult with other agencies, offices, and interagency working
groups as necessary, including the President's Management Council and Performance
Improvement Councils, and, with regard to use and expansion of the Dashboard, the
Chief Information Officer (CIO) and Chief Technology Officer to implement this
(e) Duties of the CPO. The CPO shall:
(i) in consultation with the Chair of CEQ and Member Agencies, issue guidance on
the implementation of this order;
(ii) in consultation with Member Agencies, develop and track performance metrics
for evaluating implementation of the Federal Plan and Agency Plans; and
(iii) by January 31, 2013, and annually thereafter, after input from interested
agencies, evaluate and report to the President on the implementation of the Federal
Plan and Agency Plans, and publish the report on the Dashboard.
(f) No Involvement in Particular Permits or Projects. Neither the Steering Committee, nor
the CPO, may direct or coordinate agency decisions with respect to any particular permit or
Sec. 3. Plans for Measurable Performance Improvement. (a) By May 31, 2012, the Steering
Committee shall, following coordination with Member Agencies and other interested agencies,
develop and publish on the Dashboard a Federal Plan to significantly reduce the aggregate
time required to make Federal permitting and review decisions on infrastructure projects while
improving outcomes for communities and the environment. The Federal Plan shall include,
but not be limited to, the following actions to implement the policies outlined in section 1 of
this order, and shall reflect the agreement of any Member Agency with respect to
requirements in the Federal Plan affecting such agency:
(i) institutionalizing best practices for: enhancing Federal, State, local, and tribal
government coordination on permitting and review processes (such as conducting
reviews concurrently rather than sequentially to the extent practicable); avoiding
duplicative reviews; and engaging with stakeholders early in the permitting process;
(ii) developing mechanisms to better communicate priorities and resolve disputes
among agencies at the national and regional levels;
(iii) institutionalizing use of the Dashboard, working with the CIO to enhance the
Dashboard, and utilizing other cost-effective information technology systems to share
environmental and project-related information with the public, project sponsors, and
permit reviewers; and


(iv) identifying timeframes and Member Agency responsibilities for the
implementation of each proposed action.
(b) Each Member Agency shall:
(i) by June 30, 2012, submit to the CPO an Agency Plan identifying those permitting
and review processes the Member Agency views as most critical to significantly
reducing the aggregate time required to make permitting and review decisions on
infrastructure projects while improving outcomes for communities and the
environment, and describing specific and measurable actions the agency will take to
improve these processes, including:
(1) performance metrics, including timelines or schedules for review;
(2) technological improvements, such as institutionalized use of the Dashboard
and other information technology systems;
(3) other practices, such as pre-application procedures, early collaboration with
other agencies, project sponsors, and affected stakeholders, and coordination
with State, local, and tribal governments; and
(4) steps the Member Agency will take to implement the Federal Plan.
(ii) by July 31, 2012, following coordination with other Member Agencies and
interested agencies, publish its Agency Plan on the Dashboard; and
(iii) by December 31, 2012, and every 6 months thereafter, report progress to the
CPO on implementing its Agency Plan, as well as specific opportunities for additional
improvements to its permitting and review procedures.
Sec. 4. General Provisions. (a) Nothing in this order shall be construed to impair or
otherwise affect:
(i) the authority granted by law to an executive department, agency, or the head
thereof; or
(ii) the functions of the Director of the Office of Management and Budget relating to
budgetary, administrative, or legislative proposals.
(b) This order shall be implemented consistent with applicable law and subject to the
availability of appropriations.
(c) This order shall be implemented consistent with Executive Order 13175 of November
6, 2000 (Consultation and Coordination with Indian Tribal Governments) and my
memorandum of November 5, 2009 (Tribal Consultation).
(d) This order is not intended to, and does not, create any right or benefit, substantive or
procedural, enforceable at law or in equity by any party against the United States, its
departments, agencies, or entities, its officers, employees, or agents, or any other person.

The White House,
March 22, 2012.
[Filed with the Office of the Federal Register, at 11:15 a.m., March 27, 2012]


NOTE: This Executive order was published in the Federal Register on March 28.
Categories: Executive Orders : Permitting and review of infrastructure projects, improving
Subjects: Government organization and employees : Federal regulations :: Review;
Transportation : Infrastructure, national, improvement efforts.
DCPD Number: DCPD201200202.


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File Modified2012-06-14
File Created2012-03-27

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