Monday, February 17, 2020

Legislation would stop EPA´s expanded waters definition

Bipartisan legislation was introduced in the Senate last week that would keep the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers from implementing a rule that could cause millions of acres of private property to be regulated as wetlands under the Clean Water Act's expand definition of “waters of the United States.”

“Not only would this exacerbate regulatory uncertainty, it would vastly extend the areas in which homebuilders and other landowners are required to obtain wetlands permits,” National Association of Home Builders Chairman Tom Woods said. “These permits can cost upwards of $270,000 and take many years to obtain. Ultimately, these higher compliance and transaction costs will make homes more expensive and could force potential buyers out of the marketplace.”

The Federal Water Quality Protection Act (S.B. 1140) would require the agencies to withdraw their proposal and resubmit a new plan after they complete regulatory requirements that are intended to guarantee a fair and balanced rule. Additionally, it would set new parameters for identifying a water of the United States.

“NAHB strongly supports this legislative fix championed by Sen. John Barrasso (R-WY) and Joe Donnelly (D-IN) that would prevent the agencies from greatly expanding the federal government’s role in regulating our nation’s waters,” Woods said.

Organizations in this Story

U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)

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