WV MetroNews: “Capito quizzes EPA chief about stream rule”
By: Chris Lawrence
West Virginia MetroNews
Wednesday, Feb. 4, 2015
View full story online HERE.

U.S. Senator Shelley Moore Capito raised questions Wednesday during a Congressional hearing about how far new rules proposed by the federal Environmental Protection Agency would go to extend authority for regulating the Clean Water Act.

The EPA’s proposed Waters of the United States rule would extend the agency’s authority to essentially all bodies of water without regard to size or frequency.

“If you bring these so called ‘ephemeral waters’ into the rule I think it really brings a lot of confusion and uncertainty,” Capito told federal EPA administrator Gina McCarthy during the hearing. “This is unacceptable in a state like West Virginia. You can’t let the whim of a particular Corps or EPA employee decide which private property is now federally regulated.”

“The trust factor here with your agency is not as good in our state as I’m sure we would all like it to be.”

Capito and others expressed fear the new rules pose great danger to future projects of farming, highway, and road construction activities in West Virginia. She added furthermore the state’s oil and natural gas industries could be subject to another severe blow from the EPA because the agency would have more latitude for denying underground or surface mine permits.