Reed: Victory for Landowners and Property Rights Advocates

May 13, 2015
Press Release

Tom Reed applauds tonight’s House passage of the Regulatory Integrity Protection Act, H.R. 1732, which protects landowners from intrusive government and ensures the protection of personal property.

“I care about the property rights of landowners,” said Reed. “Not only are these rights guaranteed by the Fifth Amendment, but they are vital to the American way of life. This bill ensures fairness in the regulatory process and for landowners.”

The bill comes in response to recent efforts by the Obama Administration, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Army Corps of Engineers to change rules that would vastly expand the federal government’s ability to regulate waterways. The proposed rule change is far too broad, and would allow the federal government to regulate everything from puddles of rainwater to agricultural irrigation systems. The rule would allow waters traditionally off-limits to federal regulation, to be subjected to the rule making process of the Environmental Protection Agency and the Clean Water Act.

The legislation passed tonight preserves existing environmental regulations and requires the EPA and Army Corps of Engineers to develop a new rule which takes into consideration all public comment received on the matter as well as input on this from state and local governments.

As part of Reed’s ongoing efforts to stand up for landowners, he recently formed the Property Rights Caucus. The caucus currently has fourteen original members from eleven states ranging from Maine to California. The goal is for the caucus to raise awareness of the threats to private property rights increases.

Other members of the Property Rights Caucus also noted this victory.

“With passage of the Regulatory Integrity Protection Act, we take a positive step in preventing the Administration’s proposed ‘Waters of the United States’ rule, which would create more problems and confusion for our economy and environment than it claims to solve,” said Property Rights Caucus Member Congressman Glenn “GT” Thompson (PA-05).

“The agencies must consult with farmers, ranchers, small business owners, contractors, and homeowners on how to write this rule,” Congressman Bob Gibbs (OH-7). “By creating a transparent process and working with state and local governments, the EPA and the Corps can go back to the drawing board and craft a rule that will provide clarity on the scope of the Clean Water Act rather than muddy the waters.”