New exemptions are “self-implementing,” which means no one needs to notify or get approval from EPA or the Corps. There’s no need to double check with anyone at any time. I’m sure farmers agree that the best discussion on jurisdictional determinations is one that never needs to happen. We added 56 exemptions because we want to boost conservation without boosting bureaucracy.
Some of it sounds sensible enough:
We heard fears that EPA is regulating groundwater. This is not true; groundwater regulations do and will fall under the purview of the states. EPA is not regulating all activities in floodplains, or every puddle, dry wash, and erosional feature. In fact, we are doing just the opposite. If cattle cross a wet field – that’s a normal farming practice, and all normal farming practices are still exempt.
The question I have is why these "fears" come up in the first place. Are we just overly sensitive? Or does all of this sound a little like, If you like your ground water, you can keep your ground water. Period. Ms. McCarthy is just another minion. She is never going to be held accountable if the EPA decides to come in and shut down the agricultural operations of political enemies or undesirables. Despotic actions by regulators can be fought in the courts, but government agencies are replete with legal staffs and flush with cash for extended court battles.
Not to mention that the EPA can bring in their very own SWAT Team like the one that intimidated Alaskan miners over potential Clean Water Act violations a few months back.
Who are you going to believe, your friendly neighborhood EPA spokes-bot or your lyin' eyes?
Water and my well is kind of on my mind. I had to have the guys who drilled my well out today to check my wiring and replace a capacitor in the box. Water is a big deal. Some of us might even think it is worth fighting for.