In this posting, I wanted to give an update on the Clean Water Rule. A joint resolution* as sponsored by Senator Joni Ernst (Republican of Iowa) was introduced on September 17, 2015 - read twice and referred to the Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works.
Below is an exact quote of the Senate Joint Resolution 22.
Providing for congressional disapproval under chapter 8 of title 5, United States Code, of the rule submitted by the Corps of Engineers and the Environmental Protection Agency relating to the definition of “waters of the United States” under the Federal Water Pollution Control Act.
Resolved by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, That Congress disapproves the rule submitted by the Corps of Engineers and the Environmental Protection Agency relating to “Clean Water Rule: Definition of ‘Waters of the United States’” (80 Fed. Reg. 37054; June 29, 2015), and such rule shall have no force or effect.
114th Congress, First Session (2015-2016)
Below is the voting record of the senators in my four-state area:
Arkansas: Boozman (R-AR), Yea; Cotton (R-AR), Yea
Missouri: Blunt (R-MO), Yea; McCaskill (D-MO), Nay
Oklahoma: Inhofe (R-OK), Yea; Lankford (R-OK), Yea
Kansas: Moran (R-KS), Yea; Roberts (R-KS), Yea
More voting records can be found here.
For simple trend analysis, I totaled the Nays and Yeas votes by party affiliates.
Yeas: 53 (50 Republicans and 3 Democrats: Donnelly, IN; Heitkamp, ND; Manchin, WV)
Nays: 44 (41 Democrats, 2 Independents: King, ME; Sanders, VT; and 1 Republican: Collins, ME)
Those who did not vote on this resolution were Graham (R-SC), Rubio (R-FL), and Vitter (R-LA).
The legislation has now moved onto the House and will ultimately go to President Obama.
Since the court system is still determining if the jurisdiction to review the Clean Water Rule lies with the courts of appeals or district courts, it appears we have two fronts going on with the Rule: legislative and judicial.
*A joint resolution is a resolution adopted by both branches of a 2-house legislative assembly and requires the signature of the chief executive to become law.
Federal Register / Vol. 80, No. 124 / Monday, June 29, 2015 / Rules, Effective August 28, 2015
http://issuu.com/societyofwetlandscientists/docs/dec_2015_wsp_final SWS Dec 2015 Newsletter