Two officials with long experience in the Bay region and with Chesapeake-related issues have been named to top positions in the EPA.

Robert Perciasepe was appointed the agency’s new assistant administrator for air and radiation. Previously, he was the EPA assistant administrator for water, where he oversaw reauthorization of the Safe Drinking Water Act and spearheaded development of the Clinton Administration’ Clean Water Action Plan, which seeks to refocus the nation’s water protection programs toward watershed management. In that position, Perciasepe had often expressed the need for the impacts of air pollution on water quality to be better addressed.

From January 1991 to August 1993, Perciasepe was Maryland’s Secretary of Environment, directing all aspects of pollution control and environmental protection in the state. During that time, he oversaw an extensive two-year re-evaluation of the Bay Program’s nutrient reduction goal.

Nominated to take Perciasepe’s old position was J. Charles Fox. As head of the EPA’s Office of Reinvention since February 1997, Fox helped to lead the agency’s efforts to make environmental regulation less burdensome and more protective through common-sense, cost-effective reforms.

Before holding that position, Fox served as chief of staff for the agency’s Office of Water and as a special assistant to Administrator Carol Browner from 1993 to 1995. From 1995 to 1997, he was the Maryland Department of the Environment’s sssistant secretary and chief sperating officer, with responsibilities for air and water pollution control, wetlands protection, waste management and mining.

“EPA is fortunate to have in its ranks leaders like Bob Perciasepe and Chuck Fox to continue the progress made by the Clinton administration in improving the nation's air and water,” Browner said.