April 13, 2015 – The House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure has unveiled legislative language designed to protect U.S. waters from federal overreach, according to the National Stone, Sand and Gravel Association (NSSGA). It is in response to the recent announcement that EPA and the Army Corps of Engineers had sent the proposed Waters of the U.S. rule to the Office of Management and Budget for review before the rule is finalized.
The legislation – to be introduced this week – would force EPA to withdraw the current rulemaking and instead begin extensive consultation with state and local officials on what a rule should include. It would allow for consultation with small businesses and other stakeholders, and would also require a new, more in-depth economic analysis.
The aggregates industry supports this legislation as a valuable step towards a more workable rule, and will be assisting to build bi-partisan support for it. When introduced, NSSGA will urge its members to ask their representatives to cosponsor the bill. According to Pam Whitted, NSSGA’s senior vice president for Legislative and Regulatory Affairs, “The bill certainly moves towards the chief goal of withdrawing the rule and increasing EPA’s consultation with the states, localities and stakeholders.”