May 12, 2014
The federal government is proposing a rule that clarifies the types of streams and wetlands that fall under the Clean Water Act over objections from farmers. Congressman Richard Hanna is calling on the government to change the rule.
The expansion is an attempt by the Environmental Protection Agency and the Army Corps of Engineers to make it clear that temporary streams and wetlands fall under Clean Water Act regulations.
The rule would make it harder for farmers to get a permit to spread manure on fields close to those smaller bodies of water.
Congressman Hanna says the rules means the EPA would come onto farms and start regulating puddles and irrigation ditches.
“The DEC of New York State does a fully adequate job of protecting our environment,” says Hanna.
Congressman Hanna is among 230 plus U.S. Representatives who sent a letter to federal agencies asking them to walk back the proposed rule.
The EPA defends the rule by pointing out that the health of rivers, lakes, bays, and costal waters depend on the streams and wetlands where they begin.
The new rule is open public comments until the 21st of July.