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Update on Recent Regulatory Issues

On Wednesday, the Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works held an oversight hearing to review the President’s budget request for the EPA.

An update yesterday from Sen. Mike Rounds (R., S.D.) stated that, “[Sen. Rounds], a member of the Senate Environment and Public Works (EPA) Committee, today had the opportunity to question Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator Gina McCarthy about the agency’s process for determining the economic impact when proposing major new rules. In addition, he asked her to clarify EPA’s contradictory statements about the public comments received on the proposed Waters of the U.S. rule. Misleading statements could confuse the public into thinking the proposed rule, which received overwhelmingly negative feedback, was more favorable than EPA portrayed.

And a news release yesterday from Ag Committee Chairman Pat Roberts (R., Kan.) stated that, “U.S. Senators [Roberts], Heidi Heitkamp (D-N.D.), and Jerry Moran (R-Kan.) today introduced bi-partisan and bi-cameral legislation eliminating a burdensome regulation that requires agriculture industry professionals to obtain a hazardous material endorsement before transporting diesel fuel critical for a number of agricultural operations.”

Also yesterday, Sen. John Thune (R., S.D.) “introduced a bill to prevent the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) from listing the northern long-eared bat under the Endangered Species Act (ESA).”

An update yesterday from Sen. John Boozman (R., Ark.) indicated that, “U.S. Senators [Boozman], Tom Cotton (R-AR) and 21 of their colleagues questioned U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service (Service) Director Dan Ashe [related letter here] regarding the agency’s consideration of the Northern Long-Eared Bat’s (NLEB) addition to the endangered species list. These bats can be found across the entire state of Arkansas, and activities throughout most of our state could be impacted by the current proposals from the Service.”

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