UPDATED: January 20, 2016, 1:00 PM CST
The Hill reports President Obama on Tuesday vetoed an attempt by congressional Republicans to overturn the controversial Environmental Protection Agency regulation knows as the Clean Water Rule or the “Waters of the United States.”
“We must protect the waters that are vital for the health of our communities and the success of our businesses, agriculture, and energy development,” Obama wrote in his veto message.
“Because this resolution seeks to block the progress represented by this rule and deny businesses and communities the regulatory certainty and clarity needed to invest in projects that rely on clean water, I cannot support it.”
The EPA wrote the rule with the Army Corps of Engineers, saying it essential to clarify that small waterways like ponds, streams and wetlands are protected under the Clean Water Act.
ORIGINAL: January 13, 2016, 2:14 PM CST
On Wednesday (Jan. 13, 2016), the U.S. House of Representatives voted to overturn the controversial Environmental Protection Agency regulation knows as the Clean Water Rule or the “Waters of the United States” (WOTUS).
WOTUS gives the EPA authority over small waterways, including those on private land. According to a report by The Hill, a publication that reports on legislative issues, Republicans are challenging the rule because they say “the administration is seeking to assert federal control over puddles, ditches, areas that are occasionally wet or other large sections of private or state land in violation of the intent of the Clean Water Act.”
The rule could be disastrous to farmers who would need a federal permit for routine tasks such as digging ditches on their land.
According to the report:
But the agency’s opponents, such as farmers and homebuilders, say it’s a broad overreach by the EPA into vast areas that were not covered before. They say that the rule's wording is so broad that it would add new bureaucracy to, or even prevent, basic tasks such as draining small ponds and constructing basic buildings.
The resolution passed the House by a vote of 253-169. The measure now goes to President Barack Obama, who has already said he will veto it.
The Clean Water Rule is not currently being enforced because of a federal court ruling that blocked its implementation while it is being litigated.
You can read the full report here.