The American Farm Bureau Federation has carefully reviewed EPA’s proposed waters of the U.S. rule – and AFBF President Bob Stallman says the results of the review are dismaying. Stallman says the EPA proposal poses a serious threat to farmers, ranchers and other landowners. Waters – even ditches – are regulated even if they are miles from the nearest navigable waters – and even if they aren’t wet most of the time – under the proposed rule. EPA says the new rule will reduce uncertainty – and Stallman says that’s true – since most every feature where water flows or stands after a rainfall is federally regulated. The proposed rule creates a new roadblock to ordinary land use activities – and he says it’s not just about the paperwork of getting a permit to farm or having farming practices regulated. He says there is no legal right to a Clean Water Act permit – so farmers and ranchers who need a permit could be denied that permit by EPA or the Army Corps of Engineers. Stallman says AFBF will dedicate itself to opposing this attempted end run around limits set by Congress and the Supreme Court – as the court has repeatedly ruled Congress meant navigable waters doesn’t mean all waters.
Source: NAFB News Service