|Chairman Lucas posted this
photo of HR 5078 today from the House
floor where the bill was passed.
For a while now, the ag community has been discussing a rule proposed by the EPA in April that would redefine what constitutes a body of water under the Clean Water Act. More specifically, farmers have been concerned that the new rule would cast a much broader net and include such things as the ditches along fields or even part of fields that flood occasionally. Implementation of the rule would impose tighter regulations on farmers near these “bodies of water.” In fact, it may require a farmer to go through the time consuming process of obtaining a permit from the EPA before any work can be done in the field.
“I am pleased the House approved this bipartisan, commonsense bill to block the EPA from expanding its control of our nation’s land and water resources.
“Whether it’s trying to regulate farm dust out of existence, milk as oil, or now treat ditches like major water tributaries, the EPA has demonstrated a hunger for power and a lack of understanding of how its actions impact America’s farmers and ranchers. The agency’s latest action would trigger an onslaught of additional permitting and regulatory requirements for our agricultural producers to protect not our great natural resources, but rather our backyard ponds.
“It is an underhanded way to harm American agriculture and threaten America’s food security. I urge Majority Leader Harry Reid to bring H.R. 5078 to the floor for swift Senate passage,” said Chairman Frank Lucas.