“It is time to put an end to this harmful rule that threatens the livelihood of our rural communities nationwide and to work to establish the needed certainty for our farmers, ranchers, manufacturers, small businesses and other landowners.” 

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, U.S. Senator Joni Ernst (R-IA), along with 46 Senate co-sponsors, introduced a joint resolution disapproving the rule submitted by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Army Corps of Engineers (ACE) that expands the scope of federal authority over land and waterways in the United States under the Federal Water Pollution Control Act, commonly known as WOTUS.

Senator Ernst’s resolution would nullify this ill-conceived rule sending a message to the EPA and ACE that they failed to address the concerns raised by farmers, ranchers, manufacturers and small businesses in Iowa and across the country. 

“Hardworking Iowans don’t need more Washington bureaucrats from the EPA telling our job creators how best to use their land,” said Senator Ernst. “This ill-conceived rule ignores the thoughtful comments and serious concerns raised by farmers, ranchers, manufacturers and small businesses across the county. Furthermore, its expanded definition causes confusion, uncertainty and unnecessary red tape. Simply put, this one size fits all method is the wrong approach that puts our agriculture community at a disadvantage.

“It is time to put an end to this harmful rule that threatens the livelihood of our rural communities nationwide and to work to establish the needed certainty for our farmers, ranchers, manufacturers, small businesses and other landowners.”

You can read the full resolution here.

Original cosponsors to the resolution include Senators Lamar Alexander, (R-TN), John Barrasso (R-WY), Roy Blunt (R-MO), John Boozman (R-AR), Richard Burr (R-NC), Shelly Moore Capito (R-WV), Dan Coats (R-IN), Thad Cochran (R-MS), John Cornyn (R-TX), Tom Cotton (R-AR), Mike Crapo (R-ID), Ted Cruz (R-TX), Steve Daines (R-MT), Mike Enzi (R-WY), Deb Fischer (R-NE), Jeff Flake (R-AZ), Cory Gardner (R-CO), Lindsey Graham (R-SC), Chuck Grassley (R-IA), Orrin Hatch (R-UT), Dean Heller (R-NV), John Hoeven (R-ND), Johnny Isakson (R-GA), Ron Johnson (R-WI), James Lankford (R-OK), Mike Lee (R-UT), John McCain (R-AZ), Mitch McConnell (R-KY), Jerry Moran (R-KS), Lisa Murkowski (R-AK), Rand Paul (R-KY), David Perdue (R-GA), Jim Risch (R-ID), Pat Roberts (R-KS), Mike Rounds (R-SD), Marco Rubio (R-FL), Ben Sasse (R-NE), Tim Scott (R-SC), Jeff Sessions (R-AL), Richard Shelby (R-AL), Dan Sullivan (R-AK), John Thune (R-SD), Thom Tillis (R-NC), Pat Toomey (R-PA), David Vitter (R-LA), and Roger Wicker (R-MS).

Sen. Ernst is also a cosponsor of Sen. Barrasso’s proposal which provides clear principles and directions for the EPA and ACE to craft a WOTUS rule that takes into consideration positions held by key stakeholders, without causing additional harmful and unnecessary government regulations.

In May, Sen. Ernst introduced Iowa farmer and small business owner Darcy Maulsby who testified on the impact of WOTUS before the Senate Small Business and Entrepreneurship Committee, and shared her personal experiences with the harmful impact and overregulation by the EPA in Iowa. Watch part of the hearing here. 

Earlier this year, the Iowa Senator invited EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy to Iowa to see firsthand how the agency’s efforts to redefine WOTUS directly impacts Iowans. McCarthy has yet to respond to the Senator’s invite. A full copy of the letter is available here.

 

Impact on Iowa:

According to an analysis by the Iowa Farm Bureau, an expanded definition of the WOTUS rule would expand EPA and ACE jurisdiction to over approximately 97 percent of Iowa. See map below:

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