EPA & Army Corps Agree to Restore Rightful Regulatory Scope of “Navigable Waters”

WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senator Cindy Hyde-Smith (R-Miss.) today praised action by the Trump administration to overturn President Obama’s overreaching 2015 Waters of the United States (WOTUS) rule.

The EPA and U.S. Army Corps of Engineers on Thursday announced a two-step rulemaking process to repeal the Obama administration’s unlawful expansion of WOTUS and restore the pre-2015 regulatory scope of federal government jurisdiction over “navigable waters” under the Clean Water Act.  The WOTUS replacement rule is expected early 2020.

“I couldn’t be more pleased that President Trump and his administration are easing the regulatory burden on Americans by repealing the Obama WOTUS rule.  From day one, Mississippi farmers, landowners, and community leaders recognized just what the Obama WOTUS rules represented—a violation of the constitutional and statutory limits of the Clean Water Act and more bureaucratic red tape for us,” Hyde-Smith said.

“We can look forward to the EPA and Army Corps of Engineers taking steps in the coming months to provide greater regulatory certainty for farmers, landowners, and real estate developers across Mississippi by clearly defining the proper limits of federal jurisdiction over navigable waters,” she said.

Hyde-Smith, who serves on the Senate Agriculture Committee, again encouraged Mississippians to participate in the review process as the EPA and Army Corps of Engineers finalize the new WOTUS rule.  Additional information on the Recodification of Pre-Existing WOTUS rules is available here.

The new rule would clarify Clean Water Act jurisdiction over traditional navigable waters, tributaries, certain lakes, and wetlands adjacent to jurisdictional waters.