Civil Enforcement Case Report Data Dictionary

The Civil Enforcement Case Report data dictionary describes the data elements that are presented in the Civil Enforcement Case Report (see Civil Enforcement Case Report Help). The Civil Enforcement Case Report contains data from EPA's Integrated Compliance Information System (ICIS).  A Case Report summarizes federal administrative or judicial enforcement actions taken by the U.S. EPA, as well as state formal enforcement actions taken pursuant to delegated authority to implement the Clean Water Act National Discharge Elimination Program System (NPDES) program. Users may report possible data errors by selecting the "Report Data Error" link at the top of the Civil Enforcement Case Report.

ECHO Gov users have access to additional government only information that are identified below by the ECHO Gov Icon icon. Enforcement sensitive information is identified by the Enforcement Sensitive Icon icon.

The Civil Enforcement Case Report is organized into the following sections:

Top of Page


Civil Enforcement Case

Basic Information

The Basic Information section contains information that identifies the action and some key descriptive variables, such as case status (e.g., concluded) and case type (e.g., judicial). This information is a summary of the more detailed record of the case that is presented in the rest of the report.

Case Number
A unique number identifying the enforcement action.  For EPA cases, these numbers begin with either the two digit EPA Region Code, "HQ" (headquarters initiated cases), and "EF" or "WF" (Eastern or Western Field Office CAA Mobile Source Program cases); followed by the fiscal year in which the action was initiated. After the fiscal year there is a sequence number.   State NPDES cases start with the two character post abbreviation, followed by a sequence number.
Case Name
The name of the case assigned to the enforcement action by the lead attorney. Generally, the primary defendant's name is used as the case name. For CERCLA cases, the facility/site name may be used.
Case Category
Identifies the type of action based on the enforcement authority used. The current options are Administrative - Formal or Judicial.
Case Status
The current status of the enforcement action. Status is based on the most recent milestone activity reported in the case record. The "as of" status date reflects the date of the most recent milestone activity. The following list presents the most common status values in their typical order of occurrence.
The following is a list of possible outcomes:

Administrative

  • Enforcement Action Data Entered
  • Complaint/Proposed Order
  • Administrative Hearing
  • Admin Law Judge Decision
  • Appeal To Administrator
  • EAB Decision
  • Final Order Issued
  • Compliance Achieved
  • Demand for Stipulated Penalties
  • Stayed While Under Appeal
  • Enforcement Action Closed

 

Judicial

  • Enforcement Action Data Entered
  • Referred to State Attorney General
  • PRN Sent
  • Referred To Headquarters
  • Referred To Dept Of Justice
  • Referred TO U.S. Attorney
  • Returned To Region
  • Complaint Filed With Court
  • Final Order Lodged
  • Final Order Entered
  • Settlement Present
  • Concluded
  • Stayed While Under Appeal
  • Demand for Stipulated Penalties
  • Enforcement Action Closed
Case Lead
The name of the lead agency responsible for the case (EPA or state).
Court Docket Number
The number the Clerk of the Court assigned to the case that is filed or to a consent decree when it is lodged. For administrative cases, this number is assigned to the case by the Regional Hearing Clerk.
DOJ Docket Number
The docket number assigned by the Department of Justice to EPA's Enforcement Action. This number will identify cases in the Federal Register and in DOJ press releases when a settlement is lodged and entered.
Relief Sought
The type of enforcement relief requested in the complaint. Examples are: penalties, injunctive relief, and cost recovery.
Enforcement Outcome
The outcome of the enforcement action. The following is a list of possible outcomes:
  • Combined With Another Case(s)
  • Default Order, No Penalty
  • Default Order With Penalty
  • Default Order With Penalty & Specified Cost Recovery
  • Default Order With Specified Cost Recovery
  • Dismissed By Tribunal
  • DOJ Declined
  • EPA Did Not Pursue
  • EPA HQ Declined To Refer
  • Final Order No Penalty
  • Final Order With Penalty
  • Final Order With Penalty & Specified Cost Recovery
  • Final Order With Penalty & Unspecified Cost Recovery
  • Final Order With Specified Cost Recovery
  • Final Order With Unspecified Cost Recovery
  • Litigated, Lost
  • Litigated No Penalty
  • Litigated With Penalty
  • Litigated With Penalty & Specified Cost Recovery
  • Litigated With Penalty & Unspecified Cost Recovery
  • Litigated With Specified Cost Recovery
  • Litigated With Unspecified Cost Recovery
  • Source Agrees
  • Unilateral Administrative Order Without Adjudication
  • Unknown
  • US Attorney Declined
  • Voluntarily Dismissed After Filing
  • Withdrawn By EPA HQ
  • Withdrawn By Region
  • Withdrawn: Deferred To State
Headquarters Division
The EPA Headquarters Division responsible for the enforcement action.
Branch
The branch or unit in the Office of Regional Counsel or Office of Civil Enforcement responsible for the enforcement action.
Result of Voluntary Disclosure?
A Yes/No flag indicating whether the enforcement action was the result of a facility self disclosure.
Multi-media Case?
A Yes/No flag indicating whether the enforcement action is a multimedia action. Multimedia actions involve violations of multiple environmental laws.
Enforcement Type
A designation of the type of enforcement action. For administrative enforcement actions, the type describes the section of the statute authorizing the action. A case may have multiple enforcement types.
Violations
A description of the violation(s) associated with the enforcement action. A case may have multiple violation values.

Penalties - Case Level

Total Federal Penalty Assessed or Agreed To
The total federal penalty assessed is the dollar penalty amount to be paid from all settlements in a concluded enforcement action. EPA settles the vast majority of its administrative and civil judicial enforcement actions, and these settlements (often called a consent order or consent decree) include an agreed upon penalty amount. In most of these settlements, there is not a direct admission by the defendant of liability for violations. In a few cases that involve bankruptcy, the penalty amount may be determined as an "allowed claim" in bankruptcy, and the amount actually recovered may be less than the amount of the allowed claim. The total federal penalty amount includes assessments due to both EPA and to other federal agencies that are party to the settlement, e.g., the Coast Guard.
Total State/Local Penalty Assessed
The total dollar penalty amount from all settlements to be paid to a state or local enforcement authority that is party to a concluded enforcement action.
Total SEP (Supplemental Environmental Project) Cost
The total estimated value of environmentally beneficial projects from all settlements which a defendant/respondent agrees to undertake as part of the settlement of an enforcement action, but which the defendant/respondent is not otherwise legally required to perform.
Total Compliance Action Cost
The estimated dollar value of injunctive relief and other physical/nonphysical costs of returning to compliance, from all settlements at a case. Injunctive relief represents the actions a defendant is ordered to undertake to achieve and maintain compliance, such as installing a new pollution control device to reduce air pollution, or preventing emissions of a pollutant in the first place.
Total Cost Recovery
The total cost recovery associated with an enforcement action. These are generally the costs incurred by EPA to clean up Superfund sites which are then recovered from the parties responsible.

Top of Page


Case Summary

A summary of the violation(s), environmental problem(s), and a description of the cause of action (basis of legal action).  The summary may be extracted from the referral transmission memo or letter or as the first section of a revised standardized referral document.

Laws and Sections

This section lists the laws and regulations that were violated. It also identifies which EPA programs took the lead in addressing the specified violations.

Law, Sections
Identifies the law(s) and section(s) violated and cited in the enforcement action. For additional information, view a list of possible Statute Codes (Law), Law Section Codes, and Law Section description combinations (PDF) (11 pp, 365 K, About PDF).
Programs
A description of the EPA program(s) under which an enforcement action has been taken, and which correspond to the cited statutes and sections.

Citations

Title
The title of the corresponding regulation in the Code of Federal Regulations associated with an enforcement action. In most cases, this will be Title 40 - PROTECTION OF ENVIRONMENT, displayed as "40CFR" or "40 CFR".
Part
The part of the corresponding regulation in the Code of Federal Regulations associated with the enforcement action.
Section
The section of the corresponding regulation in the Code of Federal Regulations associated with the enforcement action.

Top of Page


Facilities

This section provides detailed facility and address information on all of the facilities associated with the case.

FRS Number
The identification number assigned to a facility in the Facility Registry Service (FRS) to uniquely identify a facility site. The Detailed Facility Report for each facility can be accessed by clicking the hyperlinked FRS number. The Detailed Facility Report presents a concise enforcement and compliance history for a selected facility.
Facility Name
The public or commercial name of a facility or site (i.e., the name that commonly appears on invoices, signs, or other business documents, or as assigned by the state when the name is ambiguous).
Address
The address that describes the physical (geographic) location of the front door or main entrance of a facility site, including urban-style street address or rural address.
City Name
The name of the city, town, village or other locality, when identifiable, within whose boundaries (the majority of) the facility site is located. This is not always the same as the city used for USPS mail delivery.
State
The two letter abbreviation that represents the state or state equivalent for the U.S.
ZIP
US postal ZIP code, as maintained by ICIS.
SIC Codes
The Standard Industrial Classification (SIC) system code of the facility, as identified in FRS. SIC codes were established by the Census Bureau to identify processes, products and services. The SIC code describes the primary activity of the facility. The first two digits in the code define a major business sector; the last two digits denote a facility's specialty within the major sector.  The Census Bureau replaced the SIC system with the North American Industry Classification System (NAICS) starting in 1987.
NAICS Codes
A 6-digit code to classify industrial establishments, as identified in FRS. North American Industry Classification System (NAICS) has replaced the U.S. Standard Industrial Classification (SIC) system. For detailed information about NAICS and for a crosswalk between NAICS and SIC codes, please check the U.S. Census Bureau NAICS page.

Defendants

This section lists each defendant's name and whether the defendant was named in the complaint and/or in the settlement.

Defendants and Settlements
The name of the defendant, Potentially Responsible Party (PRP for Superfund cases), or respondents associated with the enforcement action.
In Complaint
A Yes/No flag indicating whether the defendant was named in the filed complaint.
In Settlement
A Yes/No flag indicating whether the defendant was named in the settlement document(s).

Top of Page


Related Case Documents

Compliance Assurance and Enforcement Division (CAED) documents are provided, where available. Documents are currently available for enforcement cases associated with EPA Region 6.

Document
A link to the related case documents, identified by either the case number or FRS ID of a facility associated with the case.
Facility Name
The public or commercial name of a facility or site (i.e., the name that commonly appears on invoices, signs, or other business documents, or as assigned by the state when the name is ambiguous).
Publish Date
The date (YYYY-MM-DD) that a document was published online.
EPA Program
The program (e.g., Air, RCRA) associated with a case document.

Top of Page


Case Milestones

This section lists the major milestone events tracked for the enforcement action and the date on which each event occurred. 

Events
The most commonly occurring milestones (by Case Type) are:

Administrative

  • Complaint/Proposed Order
  • Administrative Hearing
  • Admin Law Judge Decision
  • Appeal To Administrator
  • EAB Decision
  • Final Order Issued
  • Enforcement Action Closed

 

Judicial

  • Complaint Filed With Court
  • Final Order Lodged
  • Final Order Entered
  • Enforcement Action Closed
Not all of the listed milestone events are required or appropriate for every case.
Actual Date
The date of the case milestone event.

Pollutants

This section contains information about the pollutants that were involved in the case.

Pollutant Name
The common name of the pollutant.
Chemical Abstract Number
The Chemical Abstract Service (CAS) number of the pollutant, if available.

Related Activities

This report section provides an Activity Type description and date for other ICIS activities (e.g., inspections, or compliance assistance) that are linked to the enforcement action.

Description
A general description of the activity linked to the enforcement action. Activity descriptions include the following:
  • Permit
  • Compliance Assistance
  • Voluntary Disclosure
  • Information Request
  • Offsite Record Review
  • Compliance Investigation
  • Inspection/Evaluation
  • Compliance Determination
  • Alternative Dispute Resolution
  • Administrative - Informal
  • Administrative - Formal
  • Judicial
Actual Date
The actual date on which the activity began.

Top of Page


Final Order

This section contains information about the conclusion(s) of the case, where it resulted in an order, consent decree, or other enforceable settlement. It describes any monetary penalties, penalty mitigation (via Supplemental Environmental Projects), cost recovery, and injunctive relief/complying actions required under the order or settlement agreement. It also includes estimated pollutant reductions resulting from the required compliance activities.

A single formal enforcement action may result in multiple final orders. Most enforcement actions tend to follow a one-case, one-final order scenario. However, and in particular with judicial actions involving multiple defendants, more than one final order may result. Each one is presented in this section as a separate conclusion/settlement.

Final Order Type
Provides a description of the enforcement instrument used by EPA to settle the case. 
Final Order Name
The name assigned to the final order/settlement as assigned by the lead EPA attorney for the case. The default name for the enforcement conclusion is the case name, which may be modified to reflect changes to the case, or to provide specificity where multiple settlements result from one case.
Linked Facilities (FRS ID)
The unique identification number assigned to a facility in the Facility Registry Service (FRS), for each facility included in the settlement. These identification numbers are the same as, or a subset of those displayed in the Facilities section of the Case Report.
Final Order Lodged Date
For federal judicial actions, this is the date a proposed consent decree is given to the Clerk of the Court for lodging in the District Court.  Upon lodging a consent decree, a notice is published in the Federal Register indicating nature of the proposed settlement and the acceptance period for public comments.
Final Order Entered Date
For federal judicial actions, this is the date the settlement document is signed by the presiding judge and entered by the Clerk of the Court. At that point, the settlement becomes a binding court order. For administrative actions, this is the date that the final order is signed and issued by the enforcement authority.
Enforcement Action Closed Date
The date that all requirements of all final orders are met and the case is considered fully closed. This milestone event and date is also reflected in the Case Milestones section. It is displayed at the final order section to differentiate the status of final orders where a case has multiple final orders being tracked, all of which are not yet closed.
Actual Termination Date
The date that all requirements of the final order are met. It is displayed at the final order section to differentiate where a case has multiple final orders being tracked, all of which are not yet closed.

Top of Page


Penalties/SEPs/Cost Recovery Amounts

Federal Penalty Assessed or Agreed To
For civil judicial enforcement actions, this amount is the federal penalty assessed against the defendant(s)  as specified in the final entered Consent Decree or Court Order. For administrative enforcement actions, it is the penalty assessed in the Consent/Final Order. It does not include the amount of the penalty mitigated due to a SEP or the amount shared with the state or local entities. Interest payments associated with a penalty paid over time are not included in this amount. EPA settles the vast majority of its administrative and civil judicial enforcement actions, and these settlements include an agreed upon penalty amount. In most of these settlements, there is not a direct admission by the defendant of liability for violations.
State/Local Penalty Assessed
The dollar penalty amount to be paid to a state or local enforcement authority that is party to a concluded enforcement action.
SEP Value
The estimated cost of environmentally beneficial projects which a defendant/respondent agrees to undertake as part of the settlement of an enforcement action, but which the defendant/respondent is not otherwise legally required to perform.
Federal Cost Recovery Awarded
The amount of cost recovery ordered or agreed to be repaid by the responsible party of parties and due the Superfund in accordance with either an administrative or judicial settlement.

Complying Actions

Complying Action ID
The unique identifier for a complying action requirement obliging the defendant/respondent to take or refrain from certain specified actions. This number is provided to facilitate identification of pollutant reductions specific to a particular complying action where multiple complying actions exist at a settlement.
Category
Category description provides a way to group similar or related complying actions, based on the nature of the actions, e.g., work practices, prevention, reduction, and removal.
Description
A code description of the complying action(s) required by the settlement. Descriptions preceded by "Migrated" reflect complying action code values from the legacy civil Enforcement Docket system.

Top of Page


Supplemental Environmental Projects (SEP)

As part of a settlement, a defendant may voluntarily agree to undertake an environmentally beneficial project (Supplement Environmental Project) related to the violation in exchange for mitigation of the penalty to be paid. It does not include activities a defendant must take to return to compliance with the law. A single settlement may have multiple SEPs. A complete description of EPA's SEP policy may be found on the EPA SEPs webpage.

SEP ID
The unique identifier for a SEP. This number is provided to facilitate identification of pollutant reductions specific to a particular SEP where multiple SEPs exist at a settlement.
Category
Category description provides a way to group similar or related SEPs, based on the nature of their implementation and/or environmental impact. The following is a list of acceptable SEP categories:
  • Assessments and Audits
  • Environmental Compliance Promotion
  • Pollution Prevention/Energy Efficiency-Conservation
  • Emergency Planning and Preparedness
  • Environmental Restoration and Protection
  • Pollution Prevention/Equipment-Technology Modification
  • Pollution Prevention/Improved Housekeeping/O&M, Training, Inventory Control
  • Pollution Prevention/In-Process Recycling
  • Other Program Specific SEP
  • Public Health
  • Pollution Prevention/Process-Procedure Modification
  • Pollution Reduction
  • Pollution Prevention/Product Reformulation/Redesign
  • Pollution Prevention/Raw Materials Substitution
SEP Value
The total estimated or actual dollar value of the Supplemental Environmental Project (SEP).
Description
A description of the Supplemental Environmental Project (SEP).

Pollutant Reductions

This section provides a table relating complying actions and SEPs to their estimated or actual environmental impact on pollutant reduction.

Resulting From
A value indicating the source(s) of the pollutant reduction(s). If the reductions are the result of a complying action or SEP, the value of the appropriate Complying Action ID or SEP ID is displayed. For the handful of reductions that are the result of an injunctive relief action (from the legacy Docket system) and which do not have a Complying Action ID, the phrase "Inj. Relief" is displayed.
Pollutant
The common name identifying the pollutant, waste material, substance, or chemical reduced.
Annual Amount
The estimated average annual amount of pollutant reduction in "Units" to "Media Affected."
Units
The units in which the pollutant reduction amount is measured (e.g., pounds, gallons, tons).
Media Affected
A description of the type of environmental media (air, water, land, etc.) where the pollutants or waste would have been emitted/discharged.

Top of Page