Digging a ditch? Call EPA first!
Backstory'Lawmakers are working to block an unprecedented power grab by the Environmental Protection Agency to use the Clean Water Act (CWA) and control land alongside ditches, gullies and other ephemeral spots by claiming the sources are part of navigable waterways.
These temporary water sources are often created by rain or snowmelt, and would make it harder for private property owners to build in their own backyards, grow crops, raise livestock and conduct other activities on their own land, lawmakers say.
“Never in the history of the CWA has federal regulation defined ditches and other upland features as ‘waters of the United States,’” said Rep. John Mica (R-Fla.), chairman of the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, Rep. Nick Rahall (D-W.Va.), the ranking committee member, and Rep. Bob Gibbs (R-Ohio), chairman of the Subcommittee on Water Resources and Environment.
“This is without a doubt an expansion of federal jurisdiction,” the lawmakers said in a May 31 letter to House colleagues.'
'The House measure carries 64 Republican and Democratic cosponsors and was passed in committee last week. A companion piece of legislation is already gathering steam in the Senate and is cosponsored by 26 Republicans.
“President Obama’s EPA continues to act as if it is above the law. It is using this overreaching guidance to pre-empt state and local governments, farmers and ranchers, small business owners and homeowners from making local land and water use decisions,”'
If this power grab is not stopped, pretty soon that puddle in your side yard will be covered by EPA regulations. Similar happened to the Sackett family, trying to build a home on land they own, finally the court allowed them to confront the EPA in court.
Lisa Jackson and her band of merry luddites need to be stopped.