When a law is created in either the House of Representatives or the Senate, it is posted at Thomas.gov so that anyone can read it and see what was done with it. For example, you can look up the Defense of Environment and Property Act of 2015 (S980), introduced in mid-April and find out that it is currently sitting in the Committee on Environment and Public Works. However, if you look closely, that bill is to protect Americans from the government controlling the mud puddles on their property. So where is the law introducing the new regulations S980 is protecting us from. There is no law passed by Congress or introduced into Congress. The ‘law’ comes directly from the EPA (where no one is elected or accountable to the American public). Now the EPA head Gina McCarthy says that S980 is unnecessary, but there seems to be some confusion about that.
Yesterday the Washington Times posted an article about the new EPA regulations.
The article reports:
“This rule is about clarification, and in fact, we’re adding exclusions for features like artificial lakes and ponds, water-filled depressions from constructions and grass swales,” McCarthy said. “This rule will make it easier to identify protected waters and will make those protections consistent with the law as well as the latest peer-reviewed science. This rule is based on science.”
The Supreme Court has twice questioned the breadth of powers decreed under the Clean Water Act, prompting Wednesday’s actions.
McCarthy claimed the new powers would “not interfere with private property rights or address land use.”
“It does not regulate any ditches unless they function as tributaries. It does not apply to groundwater or shallow subsurface water, copper tile drains or change policy on irrigation or water transfer.”
Not surprisingly, Sen. Barbara Boxer of California, THE top Democrat on the Environment and Public Works Committee, loves the plan.
Not everyone sees it that way:
“EPA’s attempt to redefine ‘navigable waterways’ to include every drainage ditch, backyard pond, and puddle is a radical regulatory overreach that threatens to take away the rights of property owners and will lead to costly litigation and lost jobs. The House is committed to fighting back against this radical policy, which is why we passed bipartisan legislation earlier this month to stop the EPA in their tracks from moving forward with this misguided proposal. It’s time for President Obama’s EPA to abandon these radical proposals, all in the name of protecting wetlands and waterways, that instead will only lead to more American jobs being shipped overseas at the expense of the American economy.”