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Hoeven asks US ag secretary to visit ND

WASHINGTON -- The Republican senator from North Dakota has asked U.S. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack to come to the Peace Garden State. Sen. John Hoeven and Vilsack met Wednesday, when Hoeven asked the secretary to gather input from farmers an...

WASHINGTON -- The Republican senator from North Dakota has asked U.S. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack to come to the Peace Garden State.

Sen. John Hoeven and Vilsack met Wednesday, when Hoeven asked the secretary to gather input from farmers and ranchers on the implementation of a new farm bill and other agricultural issues important to North Dakota producers. Hoeven said in an email that it is important for Vilsack to be informed on concerns during the bill's application.

"He also needs to hear their concerns about conservation compliance and the (Environmental Protection Agency's) Waters of the United States rule, which could impose burdensome requirements on producers," Hoeven wrote in the email.

The rule would place under regulation by the EPA all waters that are currently used, were used in the past or may be susceptible to use in interstate or foreign commerce.

Hoeven strongly opposed the rule, saying producers could be at risk of liability because of it. Hoeven has asked the agency to withdraw the rule, calling on Vilsack for help.

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