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Senate repeal falls short, EPA clean water survives

BECKLEY, W.Va. — The Senate Tuesday fell short of advancing legislation to repeal proposed environmental regulations aimed at bringing more waterways and wetlands under federal protection, handing the Obama administration a victory on rules that have faced a number of legal and political setbacks since being introduced this summer.

With 57 senators — all the GOP and four Democrats — voting to repeal the measure, 41 Democrats voted against the elimination of the Waters of the United States (WOTUS) falling short of the 60 votes needed to begin debate on the bill.

 “West Virginia’s farmers, small businesses, energy producers and agriculture community have shared their concerns with me about the burdens and uncertainty this regulation would impose. Protecting our drinking water sources and precious natural resources is a goal we all support, but the WOTUS rule would lead to a massive expansion of costly permitting requirements, hampering farmers and rural communities and subjecting small puddles and ditches to the same regulations as large lakes and rivers. These are costs West Virginia’s already struggling economy cannot afford,” said Sen. Shelley Moore Capito, R-W.Va.

Sen. Joe Manchin was one of the Democrats to vote to advance a resolution of disapproval under the Congressional Review Act to reverse the WOTUS rules.

“The EPA wrote and finalized this rule without consulting some of the people who care about clean water the most: everyday West Virginians and Americans…


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