New MOFB legislative affairs director focused on WOTUS
Missouri Farm Bureau’s new director of legislative affairs says challenging proposed changes to the Waters of the U.S. Rule is top priority.
Dan Engemann tells Brownfield the state’s largest farm group is ready for WOTUS’ public comment period to end and roundtable discussions to start.
“We’ve put in recommendations for those panels,” he said. “We’re just, at this point, waiting to hear back on – are those people that we’ve submitted – are they going to be selected to participate.”
The EPA and Army Corps of Engineers announced in November their intentions of reverting the legislation back to its Obama-era language. The Trump administration updated the rule in October 2019 limiting it to navigable waterways. Engemann, the former executive director of the Coalition to Protect the Missouri River, says the proposed rule would give EPA regulative authority over navigable, standing, and temporary bodies of water.
“That’s way too big of an approach, the wrong approach to do,” Engemann said. “Let’s focus on a rule making here that’s meaningful and that really focuses on the navigable waterways and not something that’s just wet certain times out of the year.”
EPA says returning to the Obama-era rule would protect public health, the environment, downstream communities, and support economic opportunity and agriculture with a “durable definition” of WOTUS.
WOTUS’ public comment period closes February 7.