The House of Representatives approved legislation to stop the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) proposed rule that would clarify which streams and waterways are shielded from development under the Clean Water Act. Agricultural groups supported this legislative effort because of their strong opposition to the proposed rule stating it was a “power grab” by the EPA and would allow the government to “dictate” what they could do with their land. The legislation, “Regulatory Overreach Protection Act,” would:
- Prohibit the EPA and the Army Corps from implementing a proposed rule expanding federal regulatory authority over bodies of water currently managed by or jointly with the states
- Prohibit an additional “interpretive rule” that limits existing exemptions for agriculture conservation practices
- Require federal agencies to consult with state and local officials to identify which waters should be federally regulated and which should be left to the states.
The administration has threatened to veto the legislation.