By Nick Goldstein, vice president of regulatory affairs & assistant general counsel, ARTBA

ARTBA, as part of the Waters Advocacy Coalition met with senior staff from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) May 8 to express support for the Trump administration’s efforts to withdraw the “waters of the United States” (WOTUS) rule.

The 2015 rule would greatly extend the reach of federal jurisdiction under the Clean Water Act to cover virtually any wet area in the country, including roadside ditches. Such an expansion of federal authority will lead to increased permitting requirements and unnecessary delays and litigation for transportation construction projects. The WOTUS rule is currently stayed nationwide by a federal appeals court.

At the meeting with EPA staff, ARTBA pledged to support the administration’s efforts to withdraw the rule and develop new regulations that strike the proper balance between sensible environmental protection and meeting our nation’s infrastructure needs.