Gov. Little leads governors in opposing Biden’s EPA waters rule

Monday January 30, 2023

Boise, Idaho – Governor Brad Little is leading 24 other Republican Governors in opposing the Biden Administration’s Waters of the United States (WOTUS) rule and called on President Joe Biden today to delay implementation of the rule until the U.S. Supreme Court issues a ruling in Sackett v. EPA, a case involving an Idaho couple.

“Biden’s overreaching WOTUS rule threatens rural communities across Idaho and America, creating uncertainty for farmers, ranchers, property owners, and everyday citizens at a time when they’re already hurting from record inflation,” Governor Little said. “I’m proud to lead our nation’s Governors in calling on President Biden to abandon this attempt to subject rural America – the backbone of our nation – to more onerous federal regulation.”

Biden’s WOTUS rule seeks to put puddles, ditches, watering ponds, and other small water features under federal protection. It is being implemented months before the U.S. Supreme Court is expected to decide Sackett, which could significantly alter the regulatory authority of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. The Biden Administration’s attempt to regulate private ponds and ditches could waste state and federal resources and cause unnecessary tension for farmers and rural communities.

Signatories to the letter include: Governors Brad Little (ID), Kay Ivey (AL), Mike Dunleavy (AK), Sarah Sanders (AR), Ron DeSantis (FL), Brian Kemp (GA), Eric Holcomb (IN), Kim Reynolds (IA), Tate Reeves (MS), Mike Parson (MO), Greg Gianforte (MT), Jim Pillen (NE), Joe Lombardo (NV), Chris Sununu (NH), Doug Burgum (ND), Mike DeWine (OH), Kevin Stitt (OK), Henry McMaster (SC), Kristi Noem (SD), Bill Lee (TN), Greg Abbott (TX), Spencer Cox (UT), Glenn Youngkin (VA), Jim Justice (WV), and Mark Gordon (WY).

Portions of the letter are included below: 

“Another burdensome and overly broad regulation from the federal government could not come at a worse time for America. Having already squandered much of America’s energy independence, you should not increase costs for consumers by tying up energy production with even more red tape.”

“We call into question the timing and necessity of the rule with the court’s upcoming Sackett decision which is expected by June of this year. That opinion could significantly impact the final rule and its implementation. To change the rule multiple times in six months is an inefficient and wasteful use of state and federal resources and will impose an unnecessary strain on farmers, builders, and every other impacted sector of the American economy.”

“The substance of the rule hinders state governments as we seek to give clarity and consistency to businesses, farms, and individuals regarding the regulatory framework for water.”

The letter from 25 Governors to President Biden is available here.

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