Chamber of Commerce releases report on state costs of federal environmental programs
In examining Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) regulations, the report, entitled “The Growing Burdent of EPA Unfunded Mandates on the States,” found that states administer 96.5 percent of delegated environmental programs, with more programs being announced last year. The EPA finalized regulations on the electricity sector, the Waters of the United States rule and a new ozone rule last year, and implementation and enforcement of those rules will fall on state governments, the report stated.
It also shows that grant funding for states from the EPA has dropped by 29 percent compared to 2004 levels, but the costs of EPA regulatory mandates has increased by 35 percent.
“Instead of being the system of cooperative federalism that Congress intended, the current relationship between the Environmental Protection Agency and the states has become one-sided, with the federal government imposing its will,” U.S. Chamber SVP of Environment, Technology and Regulatory Affairs William Kovacs said. “EPA and the Obama administration have introduced some of the most expensive regulations in our country’s history, and then left state and local officials with the tab.”