Senate Agriculture Committee Republicans are asking the EPA to withdraw the so-called interpretive rule released with its "Waters of the United States" (WOTUS) proposal, saying it could “fundamentally alter interaction between farmers and the federal government."
"Beyond adding confusion and uncertainty, the Interpretive Rule would fundamentally change the relationship between the Department of Agriculture and farm families. Over decades of farm policy, USDA has established an unprecedented relationship of trust with farmers, ranchers, and rural stakeholders. This unique relationship is built on voluntary conservation programs and a mutual commitment to protecting natural resources and keeping land in agriculture. Bringing USDA into the Clean Water Act permitting process would profoundly shift the nature of this successful approach by dismantling a longstanding partnership between the Federal government and agriculture community,” the Senators wrote.