The House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee unanimously passed a bill (H.R. 5078) on July 16 that would prevent the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Army Corps of Engineers from moving forward with their proposed rule that expands the scope of waters subject to federal regulation under the Clean Water Act. The rule would negatively impact multifamily by increasing permit length times and related costs.
Essentially, the bill would prevent the EPA from developing, finalizing or enforcing the proposed rule and from using the rule as the basis for any enforcement decisions under the Federal Water Pollution Control Act. The bill leaves regulation to the states as it has been for almost 40 years.
NMHC joined with the members of the Waters Advocacy Coalition in submitting a letter of support for the bill, which now heads to the House floor for consideration. The senate introduced a companion bill (S. 2496) last month that has 37 Republican co-sponsors, but it is not expected to be scheduled for consideration before the mid-term elections.