JONES OPPOSES RULE EXPANDING EPA AUTHORITY OVER PRIVATE PROPERTY

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Congressman Walter B. Jones (NC-3) is speaking out in opposition to a proposed rule that would aggressively expand federal authority over private property.  The rule, proposed by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, would broadly redefine waters subject to EPA regulation.  Existing rules limit EPA jurisdiction to “navigable” waters of the United States.  The Obama administration’s new rule would expand the definition of waters to include nearly all areas that have any connection to downstream navigable waters, including man-made ditches.  

The proposal runs counter to Supreme Court precedent and is based on flawed scientific evidence that grossly underestimated the number of additional U.S. waters and wetlands that would be subjected to EPA jurisdiction.  If enacted, it would have a significant negative impact on private property owners in Eastern North Carolina and across the nation.   

Citing these facts, Congressman Jones and 230 of his colleagues penned a letter to EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy and Army Secretary John McHugh, requesting that the rule be returned to the two agencies.

“By deciding that essentially any area containing water should be regulated by the EPA, this rule would impose more unnecessary federal regulations on many of Eastern North Carolina’s private property owners,” said Congressman Jones.  “To grow the economy and create jobs in Eastern North Carolina, we need less federal red tape, not more.  Furthermore, this burdensome regulation would be imposed with little to no benefit for the environment.  This is a bad rule, and the administration ought to withdraw it immediately.”

The full text of the letter is available at the link below.