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Hoeven calls for Senate to eliminate Waters of the US rule

WASHINGTON -- In a speech on the Senate floor, Sen. John Hoeven, R-N.D., called on the Senate to stand up for farmers and ranchers and vote on an amendment he is cosponsoring that prevents the Environmental Protection Agency and the Army Corps of...

WASHINGTON -- In a speech on the Senate floor, Sen. John Hoeven, R-N.D., called on the Senate to stand up for farmers and ranchers and vote on an amendment he is cosponsoring that prevents the Environmental Protection Agency and the Army Corps of Engineers from finalizing their proposed Waters of the U.S. rule.

The proposed regulation would significantly expand federal authority to regulate small wetlands, creeks, stock ponds and ditches under the Clean Water Act. Hoeven says the amendment, which is sponsored by Sen. John Barrasso, R-Wyo., and supported by 29 senators, should be brought up for a vote during the current debate on the sportsmen's bill.

"We have the lowest-cost, highest-quality food supply in the world," Hoeven says. "Now the EPA, by its own volition is going to go out and make it harder, more expensive and more difficult for our farmers and ranchers to do what they do better than anyone in the world. Farmers and ranchers have to work through uncertain weather and markets to ensure we have food security, and they don't need the burden of additional regulations and litigation. They certainly don't need that burden under the auspices that EPA says, oh somehow this is going to help you. Well, that's not the case."

Last week, Hoeven pressed U.S. Department of Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack to work with him to eliminate the proposed rule and to address widespread concern among farmers and ranchers about the regulation.

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