The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) sent to the White House’s Office of Management and Budget (OMB) its controversial regulation to redefine the extent of its authority over U.S. water bodies for final review and approval. This proposed regulation would place more water bodies under federal jurisdiction, and result in more unintentional property rights violations, more time consuming and expensive permits and less economic development.
EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy said the final version of the rule reflects some changes the agency made to the regulation, including clearer definitions of which bodies of water, tributaries, wetlands and other features are covered, while ensuring that ditches, agricultural practices and municipal storm sewer systems are not covered. NAR has opposed this rule in part because of the potential impacts on homeowners. In addition, NAR believes the Clean Water Act does not allow federal jurisdiction over all waters. NAR will continue its legislative and regulatory efforts to have this rule withdrawn and start over to develop more effective ways to protect the quality of our country’s water.