News and Commentary
Voice of Idaho Agriculture
The American Farm Bureau Federation recently reviewed EPA’s March 25 release of the ‘waters of the U.S.’ proposed rule. The results of the review are dismaying.
The EPA proposal poses a serious threat to farmers, ranchers and other landowners. Under EPA’s proposed new rule, waters – even ditches – are regulated even if they are miles from the nearest ‘navigable’ waters. Indeed, so-called ‘waters’ are regulated even if they aren’t wet most of the time. EPA says its new rule will reduce uncertainty, and that much seems to be true: there isn’t much uncertainty if most every feature where water flows or stands after a rainfall is federally regulated.
Under this proposed rule, farmers, ranchers and every other landowner across the countryside will face a tremendous new roadblock to ordinary land use activities. This is not just about the paperwork of getting a permit to farm, or even about having farming practices regulated. The fact is there is no legal right to a Clean Water Act permit – if farming or ranching activities need a permit, EPA or the Army Corps of Engineers can deny that permit. That’s why Clean Water Act jurisdiction over farmlands amounts to nothing less than federal veto power over a farmer’s ability to farm.
The Idaho Farm Bureau opposes the creation of a Boulder-White Cloud National Monument by presidential proclamation.
Forget potatoes, forget gems, while our state legislators are in Boise this spring they may want to consider an additional piece of legislation declaring Idaho “The Sage-Grouse State.”
It has a ring to it.
Fed bashing is a popular endeavor here in Idaho that a lot of outsiders don’t seem to understand. Following, in an attempt to shed some light, is a discussion on taking private property, managing federal property and wildlife management.
In its selection process of a route for a massive power transmission line across southern Idaho, the Bureau of Land Management listed eight criteria used in the decision making process.
Wolf recovery in the Northern Rocky Mountains is one of the greatest success stories in the history of the Endangered Species Act – that is unless you live here. In a period of time spanning less than 20 years, our federal government led by then Secretary of Interior Bruce Babbitt and President Bill Clinton, transplanted, recovered, and recently pulled nearly a million dollars in funding for wolf management activities.
The recent government shutdown has demonstrated an astonishing lack of understanding of basic economic principles by the media and the general public. The old adage is apparently still true, if you repeat a lie enough times most people will believe it.
According to one of the nation’s leading natural food retailers, consumers have a right to know what’s in their food and labeling of genetically altered food is good public policy.