Fears Of EPA ‘Land Grab’ Create Groundswell Against Water Rule

 

 

 

 

 

 

” Lawmakers are up in arms over an Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) proposal that they fear could give federal officials expansive new powers over private property and farmland.

 The EPA is seeking to redefine what bodies of water fall under the agency’s jurisdiction for controlling pollution. The scope of the final Clean Water Act (CWA) rule is of critical importance, as any area covered would require a federal permit for certain activities.

  The rule is facing a groundswell of opposition from lawmakers, who fear the EPA is engaged in a “land grab” that could stop farmers and others from building fences, digging ditches or draining ponds.

  More than 260 lawmakers, spanning both chambers and parties, have come out against the EPA’s action.”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

” A group of 231 members of the House recently sent a letter to the EPA and the Army Corps asking them to withdraw the regulation. The group included almost the entire House Republican conference, as well as 19 Democrats.

“ Although your agencies have maintained that the rule is narrow and clarifies CWA jurisdiction, it in face aggressively expands federal authority under the CWA while bypassing Congress and creating unnecessary ambiguity,” the lawmakers wrote.

  The proposed rule is eight years in the making, and aims to clear up ambiguity in federal regulations that the EPA says was created by a series of Supreme Court decisions. “

 

 

 

 

 

 

” The EPA says the new rule — dubbed “Waters of the United States,” or “WOTUS” — would not massively expand its authority, nor would it create powers over back yards, wet spots or puddles.

The rule would place features such as ditches, ephemeral drainages, ponds (natural or man-made, prairie potholes, seeps, flood plains, and other occasionally or seasonally wet areas under federal control,” the House lawmakers wrote in their letter.

  The Senate also has a significant faction fighting the EPA’s action. Thirty Republican senators signed onto a bill introduced this week that would prevent the EPA and the Army Corps from moving forward.”

 

More at the Hill  and you can find out more at #DitchTheRule.FB.org