The Clean Water Restoration Act (S. 787) was introduced into the 111th Congress earlier this month by Sen. Feingold (D-WI). The bill would change the jurisdiction of the Clean Water Act (CWA) from "navigable waters" to "waters" of the U.S. Since the introduction of S. 787, 24 U.S. Senators have co-sponsored the bill. A house version has not yet been introduced this year. Last year the House version of the Clean Water Restoration Act had 176 co-sponsors.
Why is this important?
Since any seasonal puddle or wetland with no direct access to a major body of water would qualify under the CWA, this change would allow the EPA and the Army Corps of Engineers to require federal permitting for any action on private forestland, such as seeding, thinning or harvesting which threatens the silvicultural exemption.
FLA opposes the Clean Water Restoration Act
Budget Resolution - Legislation in the form of a concurrent resolution setting forth the congressional budget. The budget resolution establishes various budget totals, divides spending totals into functional categories (e.g., transportation), and may include reconciliation instructions to designated House or Senate committees.
Conference Committee - A temporary, ad hoc panel composed of House and Senate conferees which is formed for the purpose of reconciling differences in legislation that has passed both chambers. Conference committees are usually convened to resolve bicameral differences on major and controversial legislation.