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Found: Basset Hound, Hwy. 97 W./Hospital Blvd., Floresville. Call 830-391-2153 between 9 a.m.-11:30 p.m.

VideoMissing: Male Boxer, since evening of Jan. 4, Hwy. 97 West, rear of Promised Land Creamery, $500 REWARD. Call 830-391-2240 with information.
Lost: Female German Shepherd, about 2 years old, pink collar, lost from Hickory Hill/Great Oaks Subdivisions off FM 539, La Vernia, on Thurs., Feb. 4. Reward! 830-947-3465.
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*Fair Housing notice. All help wanted advertising in this newspaper is subject to the Fair Housing Act which makes it illegal to advertise "any preference limitation or discrimination based on race, color, religion, sex, handicap, familial status, or national origin, or an intention, to make any such preference limitation or discrimination." This newspaper will not knowingly accept any advertising for help wanted ads, which is in violation of the law. Our readers are hereby informed that all dwellings advertised in this newspaper are available on an equal opportunity basis.
Warning: While most advertisers are reputable, some are not. Unfortunately the Wilson County News cannot guarantee the products or services of those who buy advertising space in our pages. We urge our readers to use great care, and when in doubt, contact the San Antonio Better Business Bureau, 210-828-9441, BEFORE spending money. If you feel you have been the victim of fraud, contact the Consumer Protection Office of the Attorney General in Austin, 512-463-2070.
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Agriculture Today


Farmers try to ‘Stop the Flood of Regulation’




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July 25, 2012 | 3,748 views | Post a comment

By Erin Anthony



Growing up, we all needed guidance at times. Don’t run with scissors. Don’t forget your jacket. Don’t eat yellow snow. If you make that face one more time, it might get stuck like that.

But, as adults, not all guidance is helpful or benevolent. That is particularly true if the guidance is coming from a government regulatory agency. Take, for example, the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) effort to expand its regulatory reach under the Clean Water Act to nearly every drop of water, and some dry land, too.

Through what’s officially known as a “guidance document,” EPA and the Army Corps of Engineers are seeking to remove the word “navigable” from the Clean Water Act. That action would allow them to regulate even a roadside ditch that holds water for only a few hours after a big rain. Both agencies have been upfront about their intent to use the guidance process to increase their regulation of water bodies and lands that have been under the states’ regulatory authority.

Another issue is the way the agencies are going about it. They’re using a guidance document, rather than going through a proper rule-making. Formal rule-making allows input from farmers, ranchers, and other landowners -- the people who would be flooded with an expensive slew of new regulations and permitting requirements should the guidance document be put in place.

Along with farmers, ranchers, and other landowners, there are another 544 people EPA and the Corps are ignoring: 535 U.S. senators and representatives and nine Supreme Court justices. The lawmakers who wrote the Clean Water Act never intended for the federal government to have the kind of control it is seeking over local bodies of water. Similarly, in two rulings, the Supreme Court affirmed important limitations of the federal government’s jurisdiction under the Clean Water Act.

Having to get another permit doesn’t sound like that big of a deal, but at $30,000 to well over $100,000 for some permits, these requirements sometimes force growers to avoid farming otherwise productive acreage just so they don’t trigger federal permit and extremely costly mitigation requirements. But in most parts of the country, it would be just about impossible to farm around every wet spot that EPA and the Corps want to regulate.

To dry up EPA’s effort, Farm Bureau has launched the “Stop the Flood of Regulation” campaign. As part of the campaign, farmers and ranchers are asking their senators and representatives to support the Preserve the Waters of the U.S. Act (S 2245 and HR 4965), which would prevent EPA from taking action through this guidance document.

They also will be sharing their stories of regulatory inundation through social media platforms. Look for the #stoptheflood hashtag on Twitter. And a Facebook page will give farm and ranch families a platform for sharing how this guidance effort might affect them.

There is no doubt; without action, a flood of federal regulations appears imminent. Many of our nation’s farms and ranches could find themselves awash in new, expensive, and unwarranted regulations -- even if the cause of those regulations is an inch-deep puddle following a downpour. Long after the puddle dries, the effect of the regulations could linger.

Erin Anthony is assistant editor of FBNews, the official newspaper of the American Farm Bureau Federation.
 

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