In a hearing this week, the Senate Agriculture Committee heard testimony from state and local officials, a livestock producer, a mosquito control district and a rural co-op regarding the proposed Waters of the U.S. regulation. Those testifying overwhelmingly supported the development of a new regulation stressing that EPA should undertake more consultation with states prior to issuing a regulation.

During debate on the FY16 budget, the Senate passed related amendments expressing concern over the proposed regulation. Senator Debbie Stabenow’s (D-MI) amendment addressed maintaining the agriculture exemptions under the Clean Water Act and passed 99-0, and Senator John Barrasso’s (R-WY) amendment, which passed 59-40, addressed limiting the applicability of the regulation to puddles, isolated ponds, roadside ditches, irrigation ditches, storm water systems, wastewater systems and water delivery.