Wednesday, September 10, 2014

GOP-led House blocks EPA proposed water rules: Obama expected to veto bill if it passes Senate

The Republican-led House on Tuesday "approved a bill to block the Obama administration from implementing a rule that asserts regulatory authority over many of the nation's streams and wetlands—an action that critics call a classic Washington overreach," Matthew Daly reports for the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. The bill passed the House 262-152.

The proposed rules by the Environmental Protection Agency have drawn criticism from agriculture groups, who fear the rules would extend EPA's jurisdiction, Daly writes. EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy has said that is not the case, but critics have been slow to believe her. The proposed rule has sparked confusion, and McCarthy has upset many rural residents, who say she is out of touch with rural life. Supporters of the proposed rules say it will lead to cleaner water, and opponents say it will hurt smaller businesses, farmers and jobs in coal-producing states.

In advance of the House vote, the Obama administration threatened on Monday to veto the bill, Timothy Cama reports for The Hill. "Citing the need to protect waterways from pollution and the rule’s scientific grounding, the White House said it 'strongly opposes' the bill, and advisers would recommend that President Obama veto it if it reaches his desk." The bill is not expected to advance in the Democratic-controlled Senate. (Read more)

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