Sunday, February 14, 2016
1012 C Street  •  Floresville, TX 78114  •  Phone: 830-216-4519  •  Fax: 830-393-3219  • 

WCN Site Search


Preview the Paper Preview the Paper

Preview this week's Paper
A limited number of pages are displayed in this preview.
Preview this Week’s Issue ›
Subscribe Today ›

Lost & Found

*Includes FREE photo online! mywcn.com/lostandfound
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.
Bear, please come home! Missing since October 22, 2014, black Manx cat (no tail), shy. Reward! Help him find his way home. 210-635-7560.
More Lost & Found ads ›

Help Wanted

Wilson Community Health Center, Equal Opportunity Provider and Employer, Floresville, Texas. The following full-time positions are available: Clinic Supervisor (LVN license required), LVN, and Client Support Representative - Medical Front Office. View qualifications at http://atascosahealthcenter.weebly.com/index.html. Send resume to: Human Resources at hr.achc@tachc.org or fax to 830-569-8320.
Experienced Heavy Equipment CDL driver, Class A with air brake endorsements, $18+ depending on experience, must have a clean driving record and must pass background and drug/alcohol test. Email resume to teika@oscenergy.com.
More Help Wanted ads ›

Featured Videos





Video Vault ›
RE/MAX homeTNMCRichardson Chevrolet home
You’ve been granted free access to this subscribers only article.

Section A: General News


New EPA regs may limit landowners’ property rights




E-Mail this Story to a Friend
Print this Story

Wilson County News
April 30, 2014 | 2,076 views | Post a comment

“If water can flow through your property, then you may be subject to EPA control under this rule,” said U.S. Rep. Steve Stockman of Texas April 3, after the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) formally announced the Clean Water Act proposal.

An EPA document “leaked” last year references proposed new rules under the Clean Water Act that impact everything from agricultural use to navigable waters. The rules could, as written, be stretched to apply to puddles, if they were to be deemed wetlands as described in the new rules (see “Ag producers make waves over mud puddles,” March 5).

Acting as a “big brother,” the EPA -- ostensibly to protect the nation’s water resources -- could dictate what landowners can or cannot do on their own private property, if the rules are implemented. Part of the rules -- governing agricultural practices -- already apply, as of March 25.

Some of the language relates to 56 “normal” farming practices, such as fencing, mulching, prescribed burning, and forage harvest management. These “will not be subject to Section 404 dredged or fill permitting requirements,” according to the proposal -- if the property is listed with the Natural Resources Conservation Service. However, if a landowner completes the conservation practice or changes the use of the land, the exemption with the EPA is lost, and the landowner must then comply with the new rules. The EPA, along with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and the U.S. Department of Agriculture, will implement the rules, once they’re approved.

“Under this rule virtually every farmer, rancher, and homeowner in the United States may have to seek federal Clean Water permits to do anything on their land,” Stockman said.

To counter the proposed EPA power grab, Stockman introduced appropriation language that would block “any funding to study, advance, or implement the Environmental Protection Agency’s proposed redefinition of ‘waters of the United States.’”

The proposed changes in the Clean Water Act surfaced when the document was sent to the Office of Management and Budget for interagency review. Legislators and organizations voiced their concerns soon afterward.

What is

included?

The proposed 111,000-word report was posted in the April 21 Federal Register. The comment period ends July 21. The topic of discussion includes the definition of terms such as “other waters” and “neighboring.”

According to a press release, the EPA and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers believe the proposed rule will “clarify protection under the Clean Water Act for streams and wetlands that form the foundation of the nation’s water resources.”

No change to the exclusion for waste treatment systems or prior converted cropland is being proposed.

The EPA and Army Corps want to clarify the protection of drinking water from public systems that supply approximately 117 million people who rely in part on streams for water. This number equals one in three Americans.

Agriculture

The proposed rules are open for public comment, but “the interpretive rule for agricultural activities is effective immediately,” according to the EPA. For the list of the 56 farming practices exempted at present, visit

http://1.usa.gov/1l32qZw.

Stockman addresses the role the Natural Resources Conservation Service has regarding the conservation practices considered “normal farming” under the Clean Water Act.

“Once the landowner completes the conservation practice or changes the use of his land, he loses his EPA exemption and must now comply with a new, and more complex, set of rules,” Stockman said.

According to the Natural Resources Conservation Service’s Water Quality Policy -- Environmental Evaluation Series, the conservation service does not make Clean Water Act determinations; only the Army Corps and the EPA do.

Extension

Stockman is not the only congressman to voice opposition to the plan. U.S. Sen. Pat Toomey of Pennsylvania and 14 other senators, including Texas Sen. John Cornyn, wrote EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy to voice concerns about the changes, asking for an extended comment period from 90 days to 180 days (allowed by the law).

This group also cited a report, “Connectivity of Streams and Wetlands to Downstream Waters: A Review and Synthesis of the Scientific Evidence,” that is not complete.

“For EPA to propose a rule without the supposed foundational scientific document firmly in place both violates the spirit of the Administrative Procedures Act as well as OMB [Office of Management and Budget] and agency circulars,” the senators wrote.

According to the EPA, “the rule will not be finalized until the final version of this scientific assessment is complete.”

Also voicing opposition is the American Farm Bureau Federation. Watch for more on the Clean Water Act proposals in a future issue of this newspaper.

For more, visit http://www2.epa.gov/uswaters.
 

Your Opinions and Comments


Be the first to comment on this story!


You must be logged in to post a comment.




Not a subscriber?
Subscriber, but no password?
Forgot password?

Section A: General News Archives


Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Agencies nab 7 in human-trafficking sting (February 10, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Apply now for Miss La Vernia Pageant (February 10, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Behind the lens: Hitting the trail (February 10, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. BPA students advance to state (February 10, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Bud Box ends two-decade career at alternative school (February 10, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Chamber to hold monthly luncheon (February 10, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. China Grove mayor, police chief clash (February 10, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Commissioners amend Kicaster-area fire coverage plan (February 10, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Court Update (February 10, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Dating and the budget (February 10, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Donate blood to save lives (February 10, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Editorial: It’s about ‘We the People’ … what will ‘we’ do? (February 10, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Editorial: National election: Iowa down, New Hampshire to go (February 10, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Firefighters plan Pancake Breakfast (February 10, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Floresville mayor to councilman: Sit down or else (February 10, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Floresville park’s erosion problems prompt action (February 10, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Free heart health screenings (February 10, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. H-E-B ice cream recall (February 10, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. La Vernia trustees consider $33.2M bond, approve new finance chief (February 10, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Lean meat still part of a heart-healthy diet (February 10, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Letter: House fire victim extends gratitude (February 10, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Letter: Pastors should keep out of politics, stay in church (February 10, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Letter: Unruly government needs discipline (February 10, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Letter: Writer says it’s okay to ignore the charter (February 10, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Meeting Watch: Evergreen Underground Water Conservation District (February 10, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Meeting Watch: Floresville Planning & Zoning Commission (February 10, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Meeting Watch: St. Hedwig City Council (February 10, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Oil, gas leasing workshop Feb. 22 (February 10, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. One-stop tax shop? (February 10, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Petition supporters plan protest rally (February 10, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Police Blotter (February 10, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Presidents’ Day office closures (February 10, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Register for Great American Cleanup (February 10, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Save the date for ‘Hope in High Cotton’ (February 10, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Should Christians support sanctuary for illegal aliens? (February 10, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Stockdale supports apartment venture (February 10, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Things are looking up in downtown Stockdale (February 10, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. ‘Official oppression’ or ‘criminal trespass’? (February 10, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Agencies uncover $400K in stolen vehicles, parts (February 3, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. China Grove begins vote on tax rollback (February 3, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Clock running out for Floresville recall issue (February 3, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Connally expands high-tech health care (February 3, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Council action changes boards (February 3, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Court Update (February 3, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Deputies charge Floresville spurned lover with arson (February 3, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Deputies investigate recent thefts (February 3, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Editorial: The demand for villains (February 3, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Editorial: What’s in a city charter? Is it like a … Constitution? (February 3, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Eight-liner opponents face deadline (February 3, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. FELPS pools tornado damage claim with city, Floresville ISD (February 3, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Floresville USDA accountant resigns (February 3, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Free CERT disaster course (February 3, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Get a free heart health screening in Kenedy Feb. 12 (February 3, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Greater LV Chamber to meet (February 3, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. H-E-B recalls cookware (February 3, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Hold on for now (February 3, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. It’s all happening at Nixon-Smiley Elementary (February 3, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Kicaster area will have fire coverage (February 3, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Landfill welcomes China Grove junk (February 3, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Letter: Apple Pie author extends thanks (February 3, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Letter: Gonzales differs with writer’s conclusion (February 3, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Letter: Talamantez truly a man of the people (February 3, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Life Line Screening event set in Floresville Feb. 28 (February 3, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Mock Republican Debate Feb. 20 (February 3, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Nixon-Smiley livestock show set for March (February 3, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. One dead in game-room robbery (February 3, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Pioneer Award honors Burnside (February 3, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Pirates Cove in Poth offers after-school care service (February 3, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Police Blotter (February 3, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Save the date for Lincoln Dinner (February 3, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. School district cops ink deal with city, county (February 3, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Second responders to meet (February 3, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Stockdale, La Vernia units respond to back-to-back fires (February 3, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Tanneberger is top agent (February 3, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Weigh in on Loop 410 changes (February 3, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. Wilson County Hermann Sons lodges meet new-member goal (February 3, 2016)
Full article available to Wilson County News subscribers only. Click here to subscribe. ‘Loving’ heart-shaped treats are for the birds (February 3, 2016)