Appropriations amendment would protect businesses from excessive fines and fees
Washington, DC (April 21, 2016) – The National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB) is calling on Senators to vote for an amendment from Sen. John Hoeven (R-ND) that would stop the Environmental Protection Agency and Army Corps of Engineers from enforcing the Waters of the United States rule. Small businesses are concerned that the rule could make development of property complex and expensive.
“The Waters of the United States rule would put the federal government in charge of practically every place in the country where water runs or pools,” said Amanda Austin, NFIB Vice President of Public Policy. “Small businesses simply don’t have the resources to pay the fees and hire the consultants to help them navigate the Clean Water Act. Every Senator should stand up for the business owners and farmers in their state and vote for Sen. Hoeven’s amendment.”
Small businesses are concerned that the rule could lead to expensive permits, fees, and fines in order to comply. The average cost of a Clean Water Act permit is tens of thousands of dollars and daily fines for violations can reach up to $37,500. Few small businesses could afford to expand operations if subjected to the federal requirements. Under the rule, federal authority could extend to ditches, ponds, and streambeds that are dry most of the time.
Yesterday, the NFIB sent a letter to Sen. Hoeven offering support for the amendment.