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Supreme Court rules against EPA in challenge by Idaho couple

BOISE, Idaho (KIFI) - The US Supreme court ruled in favor of an Idaho couple who sued the Environmental Protective Agency when it stopped them from building a home near Priest Lake in northern Idaho. 

The EPA had said part of the construction of the home violated the Clean Water Act. 

Thursday's ruling from the Supreme Court said it does not. 

The decision is a victory for Chantell and Michael Sackett, who purchased a vacant lot near Idaho’s Priest Lake. Three years later they broke ground, hoping to build a family home, but soon got entangled in a regulatory dispute. As they began backfilling the property with 1,700 cubic yards of sand and gravel to create a stable grade, the EPA sent them an order halting construction.

Idaho Representative Mike Simpson was very happy with the decision. He issued a statement saying this decision is a victory for Idaho and the many property owners, farmers and ranchers who deal with regulatory uncertainty.

“This decision will bring the regulation of the Clean Water Act closer to the Trump Administration’s 2020 Navigable Waters Protection Rule, a rule that I helped write that actually worked for rural America. When the EPA announced its intention to replace the Navigable Waters Protection Rule with a new rule greatly expanding the federal government’s reach, I warned that this pending Supreme Court decision would likely send them back to the drawing board anyway,” Simpson said. “I am glad to see the Court provide needed clarity on this issue. The EPA simply cannot continue in its attempt to regulate every puddle, ditch, and stream in this country. This decision is a victory for Idaho and the many property owners, farmers, and ranchers who are left to deal with the very real consequences of regulatory uncertainty.”

Article Topic Follows: Idaho

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