Small Business Sue EPA Over Water Rules

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Business groups filed a federal lawsuit challenging new regulations that define what bodies of water are subject to the Clean Water Act

The Clean Water Rule was adopted by the Environmental Protection Agency and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers in May. The agencies contend the rule simply provides more precise definitions on what types of waters are subject to federal regulations. But business groups contend it significantly expanded federal control over land use.
In their lawsuit, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and the National Federation of Independent Business contend the rule is invalid because the Clean Water Act gave federal agencies the authority to regulate “navigable waters,” not the ponds, irrigation ditches and occasionally wet land they contend is covered under the new regulation. Plus, the lawsuit alleges the agencies failed to follow a law that requires agencies to consider the economic impact that major rules would have on small businesses.

“The EPA and the Army Corps have rewritten the Clean Water Act in an effort to expand their power and — in the process — have completely ignored their obligation to seriously consider small business impacts,” said Karen Harned, executive director of the NFIB Small Business Legal Center. “These are runaway bureaucracies that have the power to destroy family businesses and local economies with shock-and-awe penalties of $37,500 per day. And we’re here today to stop them.”

Source: The Business Journals

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