This document provides a framework for Federal, state, territorial, tribal, and local government officials to use in expediting decisions for characterizing and cleaning up after a wide area hazardous chemical release. Hazardous chemicals include chemical warfare agents (CWAs) and toxic industrial chemicals (TICs), with some TICs considered as potential CWAs. The effort required the development of acceptable clearance criteria for the eventual re- occupancy of the impacted areas. To this end, a Federal interagency group of experts surveyed the current state-of-the-science on risk assessment, sampling analysis strategies, laboratory capacity, decontamination technologies, regulatory environment, and operational logistics as it relates to the development of a chemical clearance strategy. This interim strategy is complementary to the broader overarching White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) draft document, Cleanup Decision-Making Guidance for Chemical Incidents. Practical clearance criteria will reduce residual risks to levels acceptable to the Incident/Unified Command. These criteria are incident and site specific, therefore the approach that this framework will take is to define a strategic methodology by which these incident and site-specific clearance criteria are developed. This interim framework is suggested as a living document that will be updated as needed to reflect the state of the science and policy.