Press Releases

House Passes Bill to Reduce Regulatory Burden

Simpson, Labrador cosponsored legislation that overturns court ruling requiring duplicative permits for pesticide application

Washington, March 31, 2011
“Congress never intended for pesticide applications that are already regulated under FIFRA to also require permits under the Clean Water Act. Yet because the court did not interpret congressional intent correctly, we must act now to ensure that farmers, ranchers, and forest managers—as well as mosquito abatement districts and local governments—won’t face unnecessary and duplicative regulations that would make it more difficult to do their jobs,” said Congressman Simpson during debate on the bill last night. “Everyone here supports protecting our water supply from polluters who are acting in violation of our nation’s environmental laws and regulations. But adding another layer of regulation by requiring NPDS permits for application of these pesticides doesn’t make them safer—it only piles unnecessary paperwork on top of day-to-day operations for small businesses, farmers, and local governments.”

Idaho Congressmen Mike Simpson and Raúl R. Labrador today supported legislation to provide certainty on how pesticide application should be regulated.  H.R. 872, the Reducing Regulatory Burdens Act of 2011, responds to a misguided federal court ruling that would have added an additional layer of duplicative regulations on pesticide application near waterways.

In 2009, the 6th Circuit Court of Appeals overturned the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)’s long-standing policy that application of pesticides under the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act (FIFRA) did not also require a permit under the Clean Water Act.  H.R. 872 overturns the court decision and clarifies Congress’s intent that existing FIFRA regulations are adequate for regulating aquatic pesticide use.  Both Simpson and Labrador are cosponsors of the legislation.

“Congress never intended for pesticide applications that are already regulated under FIFRA to also require permits under the Clean Water Act.  Yet because the court did not interpret congressional intent correctly, we must act now to ensure that farmers, ranchers, and forest managers—as well as mosquito abatement districts and local governments—won’t face unnecessary and duplicative regulations that would make it more difficult to do their jobs,” said Congressman Simpson during debate on the bill last night. “Everyone here supports protecting our water supply from polluters who are acting in violation of our nation’s environmental laws and regulations.  But adding another layer of regulation by requiring NPDS permits for application of these pesticides doesn’t make them safer—it only piles unnecessary paperwork on top of day-to-day operations for small businesses, farmers, and local governments.” 

“The passage of this bill represents a step forward toward certainty for many in the agricultural community,” said Congressman Labrador. “Mr. Simpson and I, along with a bipartisan mix of our colleagues from around the country, have spoken with one voice to prevent yet another burdensome regulation from stifling economic activity in rural America.”

H.R. 872 received broad bipartisan support in committee and passed the House of Representatives by a vote of 291-130.  Congressman Simpson, who chairs the House Interior and Environment Appropriations Subcommittee, spoke in favor of H.R. 872 during floor debate last night. To view his statement on the House floor, click here.