06.10.15

Senator David Perdue Condemns Power Grab By President Obama’s EPA

Blasts Blatant Government Overreach In Judiciary Committee Hearing

WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senator David Perdue (R-GA), a member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, today condemned the Environmental Protection Agency’s recent water rule, Waters of the United States. In a Judiciary Committee hearing, Senator Perdue noted that the new rule from President Obama’s EPA is blatant regulatory overreach and will hurt Georgians. For example, the regulation would impact nearly 3,000 miles of roads, 1,500 miles of streams, and 1,400 miles of drainage ditches in Gwinnett County.

Watch the video here.

Transcript: 

Senator Perdue: Now turning to Waters of the U.S., I am very concerned about this. This is unprecedented. It's a radical assertion of agency jurisdiction. It would have a dramatic impact on my state, Georgia farmers particularly, but this is a letter that I received from a board of commissioners of one of the largest counties in our state. 

These are not radical people and the sarcasm from the other side that tells me or tells the public that anybody that disagrees with the Waters of the U.S. impending regulation is ignorant and self-serving. The marginalizing condescension is intellectually insulting to me. This is a very well thought out letter. 

Gwinnett County has over 3,000 miles of roads in that county, 1,500 miles of streams, almost a thousand miles of ditches on the right-of-ways of those roads, and 1,400 miles of additional drainage ditches that would come the purview of this law, and frankly the way the EPA marketed, you mentioned this earlier Ms. Steen, and promoted this rule on social media just boggles my mind. 

This wasn’t notice and comment rulemaking, they talked to people out there, and then they promptly ignored most of it. This wasn't notice and comment at all. This was a political campaign that the Obama Administration was running from the very get-go through the EPA, just like when they couldn't get cap-and-trade, they told the EPA to kill coal and they did it in a year. 

Ms. Steen, about the Waters of the U.S., have you seen other agencies behave like this in your career? You've got a long distinguished career. Can you put in context for us these actions and the dramatic broad reaching impact with the respect to this rulemaking? 

Ms. Ellen Steen, American Farm Bureau: I'd like to be able to do that more broadly, beyond the EPA, but my career has focused on EPA. What I can say, is that throughout my career of dealing with EPA regulations, and I've always been on the industry side, I've always been on the regulated side of the issues. Many of those issues and rulemakings have been very hotly contested over the years, but what I have never seen, even from EPA, is the level of gamesmanship and deception that I've seen going on in this rulemaking. 

And for those who believe that there should be an open and honest discussion with the public, with congress, an open and honest analysis on the front end of the cost and the impact of new regulations. It's frightening, and it’s disheartening, and it’s disillusioning, and no I've never seen anything like it before.