WASHINGTON – Idaho Senator Mike Crapo applauded an Executive Order signed today by President Trump directing the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and other federal departments to review the Obama administration’s ‘Waters of the United States’ rule, or WOTUS. Under the President’s order, agencies will review the rule to make sure it complies with new guidelines from the administration aimed at minimizing regulatory uncertainty.
“The proposed ‘Waters of the United States’ rule is a textbook case of a federal overreach,” said Crapo. “This rule would have essentially subverted state water sovereignty and jeopardized private property rights by significantly expanding federal authority— allowing the EPA to regulate nearly every stream, ditch, pond and puddle on both state and local lands, as well as private property. I fully support the President’s order to review this overreaching rule.”
The WOTUS rule was issued by the EPA and Army Corps of Engineers in 2015. It significantly expanded the definition of navigable waters under the Clean Water Act, which historically had been limited to rivers and streams and their immediately adjacent wetlands. Both EPA and the Corps altered the definition to cover areas such as ditches, ponds, and prairie potholes. The rule established broad new power over water and land use across the country.
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