Making Your Public Comments Count

View Rules, Regulations and Documents Currently Open for Public Comment

People can get frustrated when they take the time to submit written or verbal public comments on a regulatory proposal, and at the end of the process, the final rule or regulation doesn’t seem to reflect their comments. They may walk away with the feeling their comments didn't really matter.

This is not true. Public participation is essential to developing more effective rules, regulations and permits. The North Dakota Department of Environmental Quality (NDDEQ) works hard to draft environmental protection rules and permits based on science and the law. They reach out to experts, but they also count on the public and other groups (both technical and non-technical) to identify flaws and to offer solutions to reach the optimal outcome, i.e., protective, reasonable regulations without unintended consequences.

The following information is provided to assist the general public and other stakeholders in making effective public comments.

Keys to Effective Public Comments

Comments that provide new information the agency has not yet considered or that offer possible solutions are helpful.

  • Point out unintended effects.
  • For instance, in 2013 NDDEQ staff recommended a revision of the state's septic pumper rule. These recommended changes to the rule were based on technical comments received during the public comment period. Because of the comments, the final rule allowed more flexibility for the business owner, avoiding some unintended consequences while maintaining environmental compliance.

  • If possible, provide technical information.
  • Certain individuals or groups can provide industry-specific analytical information that may be beyond NDDEQ’s expertise, thereby helping to refine the rule or permit under consideration. For instance, recent advancements in technology and materials may make some rules obsolete.

  • Point to a solution, rather than just the problem.
  • Although helpful to explain why a rule won't work, it is more helpful to suggest constructive alternatives and substitute language to address the concern or problem.

Common Comment Mistakes

Comments that offer opinions or raise questions unrelated to the proposed rule or permit are not so helpful.

  • A comment is not a vote.
  • The public comment process is not a vote. One well-supported comment is often more informative than a hundred emails or form letters raising the same point. In cases where this occurs, the NDDEQ will not respond to each comment individually but will note it received the same comment multiple times.

  • Comments that are not specific to the rulemaking or permit proposal are not relevant.
  • Read and understand the propoed rule or permit that you are commenting on. For example, if the proposed regulation concerns updating the water quality standards and a comment is submited regarding air quality, staff will not respond to it due to its lack of relevancy.

  • Some comments address issues that are beyond the authority of the NDDEQ.
  • As a member of the public or representative of another group, you may have a great suggestion for improving North Dakota's air, land or water quality. While the NDDEQ welcomes these ideas, implementing them may require federal, legislative or governor approval. Understanding the regulatory authority and process can help support the consideration of your ideas.

  • Questions on a proposed rule are not considered comments.
  • Questions are welcomed! However, they are not considered comments. If you have one, email or call the contact person identified in the public notice. The NDDEQ includes contact information for its rule and permit experts on the public comment page. Receiving clarification on a question may help you formulate a better comment.

We are committed to using the public notice and comment process to improve department decisions. If you have additional questions about the public notice and comment process for a specific proposal, please contact us at 701-328-5150, or visit our website at

Public Comment Tips

Employee Email List

Last Name First Name E-Mail Address Program Phone
Ahlstedt Carter
Albaugh Karissa 701-400-1043
Allery Ryan 701-328-5294
Anderson Carl WQ Ground Water Monitoring 701-328-5213
Anderson Janell 701-328-5204
Andes Alicia 701-328-5298
Bartholomay Craig MF Operator Training & Inspection 701-328-6626
Baumgartner Paul AQ Ambient Monitoring 701-328-5181
Baxley James
Becker Sarah 701-328-9151
Bell Marlon 701-328-5221
Bingert Matt AQ Permitting & Compliance 701-328-5192
Brazil Emily 701-328-5296
Brunner Sarah
Bruschwein David Municipal Facilities Division 701-328-5259
Budde Nick WQ Ground Water Monitoring 701-328-5267
Cannon Amy
Cardwell Raina 701-328-1336
Carman Patty Municipal Facilities Division 701-328-5251
Cech Charles Chemistry
Christianson David 701-328-5178
Coats Julie 701-328-5252
Collins Jim WQ Watershed Management 701-328-5161
Crowdus Kory WQ Ground Water Monitoring 701-328-5202
Dahl Lane 701-328-5222
Davis Sarah
Deibert Karen AQ Radiation Control 701-328-4458
Delzer Alexis WM Solid Waste 701-328-5282
DeWald Matthew Chemistry
Dillmann Nikki
Earnest Samuel searnest
Erb Myles 701-328-6622
Erickson Ernest AQ Ambient Monitoring 701-328-5173
Espe Brady WQ NDPDES Permitting 701-328-5228
Fasching Skye WM Solid Waste 701-328-5272
Fisher Shannon MF Drinking Water SRF 701-328-5220
Fowler Nicolle 701-541-2113
Freimark Joel 701-328-5096
Friesz Roxela 701-328-5297
Fritz Ann Directors Office 701-328-5150
Gabriel John Chemistry
Galloway Noah ngalloway 701-328-5253
Gertis Daniel 701-857-8638
Gilley Cameron 701-328-5210
Glatt Dave Directors Office 701-328-5150
Gleich Casey WQ Ground Water Monitoring 701-328-4164
Gorman Erica
Griffith Olivia 701-328-6624
Gross Joe WQ Watershed Management 701-328-5292
Grossman Dallas WQ NDPDES Permitting 701-328-5242
Gulleson Alison agulleson
Gurske Carolyn 701-328-1678
Haberstroh Gary Directors Office 701-328-5206
Hall Derek WM Hazardous Waste 701-328-5168
Hansey Brittany 701-328-5201
Hanson Lawrence 701-328-5291
Haroldson Marty WQ NDPDES Permitting 701-328-5234
Harrison Kylee 701-328-5187
Hasche Alysha
Heinle Shawn MF Operator Training & Inspection 701-328-6627
Hermanson Chad 701-328-1606
Herreid Stacey MF Drinking Water 701-328-5287
Hilzendeger Bruce 701-328-5199
Hinnenkamp Keith AQ Permitting & Compliance 701-328-5196
Hite Nicole 701-328-1676
Houle Brian 701-328-5193
Hulst Annelise 701-328-1377
Hulst Darci
Hummel Evan
Hummel Micah
Hyatt Charles Waste Management Division 701-328-5166
Ilunga Frederick 701-328-5176
Jacobson Beth Directors Office 701-328-5150
Jacobson Sarah
Johnson Allen Directors Office 701-328-5150
Jones Jordan 701-328-5260
Joynt Emily 701-328-5239
Kaiser Don 701-328-5151
Kangas Jane AQ Indoor Air 701-298-4637
Kannenberg Derek WM Hazardous Waste 701-328-5160
Kosse Kevin Chemistry
Kritzberger Ryan 701-328-9035
Krivoruchka Darby
Kruske Montana 701-328-5172
Kumar Sankalp 701-328-5809
Lawson James AQ Xray 701-328-6403
Lee Laura Municipal Facilities Division 701-328-6628
Leingang Carolyn Directors Office 701-328-5150
Letzring Brianna 701-328-9095
Luedeman Kennedy 701-328-5361
Machart Craig 701-781-0528
Martin Russell AQ Permitting & Compliance 701-328-4639
Martin Shawn 701-328-5212
May Rebecca
McCauley Jenna
McCusker Kristie 701-328-5150
McDaniel Paige 701-328-2381
McGee Julia 701-328-1380
Miller Adam AQ Permitting & Compliance 701-328-5266
Miller Elijah AQ Ambient Monitoring 701-328-5286
Miller Meridith 701-328-5166
Miller Michael 701-328-5194
Mills Ryan AQ Ambient Monitoring 701-328-5254
Milner Christopher 701-328-9060
Murray Mitch 701-328-5250
Nelson Amber 701-328-5210
Norton Chance WQ Ground Water Monitoring 701-328-5253
Novak Emilee WQ Watershed Management 701-328-5240
O'Gorman Brian WQ Spill Investigation 701-328-5177
Olson Brooke AQ Radiation Control 701-328-5182
Olson Jaxsyn 701-328-1382
Otto Justin AQ Asbestos Control 701-328-5246
Panchol Reuben WM Underground Storage Tank 701-328-5167
Papalichev Hristo WM Solid Waste 701-328-5223
Peltier Danielle 701-328-5279
Peters Bryce 701-328-5209
Peterson Eric Chemistry
Peterson Wyatt AQ Radiation Control 701-328-5184
Pfaff Rebekah AQ Permitting & Compliance 701-328-5263
Popowski Marcus 701-328-1389
Poppke Ted WM Solid Waste 701-328-5264
Potter Darla 701-328-5101
Quach Anthony 701-328-5156
Quarnstrom James Chemistry
Resch Christine
Roberts Emily 701-328-5024
Rockeman Karl Water Quality Division 701-328-5225
Ronning-Schimetz Kathleen 701-328-5276
Roob Christine WM Hazardous Waste 701-298-4638
Rose Michaela 701-328-6404
Sandvick Duane WQ NDPDES Permitting 701-328-5191
Schafer Jacob MF Operator Training & Inspection 701-328-6375
Schick McKenzie WQ Watershed Management 701-328-5288
Schiermeister Robin WM Underground Storage Tank 701-328-5149
Schiwal Alyssa WQ Ground Water Monitoring 701-328-5159
Schmitt Bryan MF Drinking Water SRF 701-328-5299
Schmitt Taylor 701-328-5027
Schneider Kyla AQ Permitting & Compliance 701-328-5218
Schuett Patrick WQ NDPDES Permitting 701-328-5235
Schwindt Devin
Seerup Josh MF Drinking Water 701-328-5257
Seibel Maggie Chemistry 701-328-5231
Seime Trevor 701-220-4723
Semerad Jim AQ Permitting & Compliance 701-328-5179
Skjod Jennifer 701-328-5150
Stewart Gregg MF Operator Training & Inspection 701-328-6621
Stockdill Scott WQ Spill Investigation 701-328-5241
Stocker Chris
Stokes Jacob MF Drinking Water 701-328-6622
Stoppler Sharmaine MF Clean Water SRF 701-328-5238
Stradinger David AQ Radiation Control 701-328-6410
Striebel Ivana WM Hazardous Waste 701-328-5265
Stroh David AQ Permitting & Compliance 701-328-5229
Strommen Rachel WQ NDPDES Permitting 701-328-5244
Suess Bill WQ Spill Investigation 701-328-5216
Suggs Shannon WQ Ground Water Monitoring 701-328-6409
Thomas Joel 701-328-5257
Thorsteinson Kari 701-328-1337
Thorton Rhannon 701-328-5271
Tillotson LeeAnn MF Drinking Water 701-328-5293
Tokach-Duran Elizabeth MF Clean Water SRF 701-328-5256
Torgerson Brad WM Solid Waste 701-328-5165
Traxel Kelsey 701-328-5258
Trussell Diana WM Solid Waste 701-328-5164
Trythall Elizabeth AQ Permitting & Compliance 701-328-5153
Trythall Mike MF Drinking Water 701-328-5269
Uhlman James 701-328-5163
Ulrich Shawn 701-328-5150
Ussatis Todd Chemistry
Veach Nessa 701-328-9111
Vetter Leon WM Underground Storage Tank 701-328-5174
Von Wahlde Joseph 701-328-5207
Wahl Evan 701-328-5278
Waldron Feld Sarah WQ NDPDES Permitting 701-328-5237
Wallery Paige 701-328-5243
Wanner Tyra Chemistry
Washek Sandra AQ Indoor Air 701-328-5190
Wavra Greg MF Drinking Water 701-328-5224
Wax Peter WQ Special Projects 701-328-5268
Wellman Aaron MF Drinking Water SRF 701-328-5284
Wert Joshua 701-328-5214
Wingerter Vance 701-328-5175
Wirth Cherreka 701-328-9166
Woutat Tanner 701-328-5233