Thursday, December 3, 2020
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A New Age for EPA in Era of Trump

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By DENNIS E. HEDKE

In his article, Lehr suggests replacing many of the duties of the modern EPA with a “Committee of the Whole,” which would be composed of the states’ environmental agencies. Lehr suggests a five-year timeline for materially reorganizing the current, destructive version of EPA left behind by the Obama administration.

Under Lehr’s plan, the Committee of the Whole would review all national environmental regulations and remove those regulations that do not comport with the congressional intent of existing federal law. In many cases, EPA as it is currently structured has created unjustifiable, reckless regulatory schemes. Lehr’s plan would gradually phase out those programs deemed unnecessary, thereby reducing EPA’s size from 15,000 to 300 (six delegates from each of the 50 states). Such a move, if successfully implemented, would greatly reduce annual expenditures, from approximately $8.5 billion to perhaps as low as $2 billion.

Lehr would also transpose the existing Washington, DC headquarters to a location in America’s heartland, making it more readily accessible to all 50 states’ local environmental agencies.

I believe Lehr’s concept has merit, but its implementation would depend on the approval of the team yet to be fully devised by the incoming administration.

The still-developing Trump environmental team offers incredible opportunity, especially Scott Pruitt, who has been tapped by President Donald Trump to be the next EPA administrator. His arrival could not possibly come at a better time.

I sincerely and deeply applaud Trump for making this appointment, and I believe Pruitt will succeed in “Making America Great Again,” by leading the free world toward appropriate environmental management—to the extent humans can achieve that objective.

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