New WOTUS Rule Ends Obama-Era Overreach

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Posted by Mike Palicz on Tuesday, December 11th, 2018, 11:43 AM PERMALINK

President Trump has delivered on his commitment to end a major federal overreach of the Obama Administration.

This afternoon, the Trump Administration’s Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced its new proposed rule to define “waters of the United States”, a move by the administration to end the Obama EPA’s effort to expand the federal government’s control over local land use decisions.

Obama’s 2015 rule extended the application of the Clean Water Act (CWA) to authorize unelected bureaucrats to regulate effectively any standing body of water and the lands next to it. Obama’s rule had nothing to do with clean water and everything to do grabbing power for the federal government to hold over farmers and private businesses.

The newly proposed definition is designed to end years of uncertainty over where federal jurisdiction begins and ends, giving much needed clarity to property owners. Under this new definition, landowners will be able to understand whether a project on their land requires federal permitting without having to spend thousands of dollars on legal fees and years in court.

“My goal for this is so that any property owner can stand on his or her property and be able to tell for themselves whether or not they have a federal waterway on their property without having to hire a lawyer or an outside consultant,” said EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler.

Americans for Tax Reform applauds this move by the Trump Administration. Today’s proposal puts power back in the hands of elected officials while allowing taxpayers and business owners to spend less time and money deciding if they need federal approval to run their own land.

Photo Credit: Matthew Peoples

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