Permit adjudications

 

Requesting a Hearing 

Affected parties may request administrative hearings to challenge the term and conditions of issued permits, challenge permit denials, or challenge other permitting actions. If the Water Quality Control Division grants the request to hold the hearing, the department then refers the matter to a hearing officer or the Office of Administrative Courts (OAC) to hold the administrative hearing. The OAC administrative law judge then issued an interim decision that can then be appealed to the executive director of the department. The executive director's decision represents a final agency action under the Water Quality Control Act.

Requesting party status (intervening)

Under the State of Colorado permit appeal regulations, any person or group who may be affected or aggrieved by the State’s action on the permit may request “party status” in permit appeal hearings to participate as an intervenor in that hearing. Application to be made a party shall set forth a brief and plain statement of the reasons for seeking party status, the facts which entitle such person to be admitted, and the matters which such person claims should be decided. In addition, the application should contain a description of the general nature of the evidence to be presented in the course of the proceedings.

Before the department refers the matter to a hearing officer or the OAC, a party may file a request for party status/intervention by emailing Meg Parish, Permits Section Manager, Water Quality Control Division, Colorado Department of Public Health and the Environment,meg.parish@state.co.us.

After the department refers the matter to a hearing officer and the OAC, the hearing officer or OAC will set a hearing date, and requests for party status/intervention should be filed with the assigned hearing officer or the OAC rather than the division. Instructions for filing and any deadlines will be posted here at that time. 

Current Hearings:
 
Status: 
  • Order granting request for hearing issued; not yet referred to OAC. 
  • Upper Blue's request for hearing was withdrawn pursuant to settlement on October 4, 2019. The request and the settlement agreement are in the permit file (see above link).
Status:
  • Order granting request for hearing issued; not yet referred to OAC.  
  • Grand County granted intervention
  • Requests for party status may be sent to meg.parish@state.co.us until matter is referred to OAC 

More information on the hearing process and requirements is available in our regulations and the Water Quality Control Act:

Mountain Coal West Elk Mine

Status:
  • Mountain Coal requested a hearing and stay on certain permit terms on September 27, 2019.
  • The Water Quality Control Division granted the hearing request in part and denied the stay on October 7, 2019.
  • The matter has not yet been referred to the OAC.
  • Requests for party status may be sent to meg.parish@state.co.us until matter is referred to OAC. 

Regulation 21, and Regulation 61.7

Water Quality Control Act, Part 4.