According to the Huffington Post, Republican Representative Matt Gaetz has drafted a bill that will “completely abolish” the Environmental Protection Agency(EPA).
Gaetz wrote in an email saying:
“Our small businesses cannot afford to cover the costs associated with compliance, too often leading to closed doors and unemployed Americans. It is time to take back our legislative power from the EPA and abolish it permanently.”
This comes after Trump signed an executive order that requires agencies to cut off two regulations for every one proposed.
This doesn’t come as a surprise as Trump doesn’t care for the environment. During his campaign he promised to boost the U.S. economy by slashing federal rules for businesses, particularly environmental restrictions.
This could end up being horrible news for the EPA budget, as Trump could gut their funding. According to a report published by Axios the potential opportunities for budget reductions include $513 million in cuts to the “states and tribal assistance grants,” $193 million in savings from terminating climate programs, and $109 million in savings from “environment programs and management.”
But those budget cuts are not enough for Gaetz, he wants to completely abolish the EPA.
“Today, the American people are drowning in rules and regulations promulgated by unelected bureaucrats,” Gaetz said, “and the Environmental Protection Agency has become an extraordinary offender.”
He also went on to site a right-wing conservative group(American Action Forum) as a way to convince lawmakers to follow him in his attempt to destroy the EPA. The statement he sited read:
“It would take more than 94,200 employees working full-time to complete one year of EPA paperwork.”
This is not the first time Gaetz opposes environmental regulations. Back in 2013 he was finally able to pass a bill that repealed a requirement that all gasoline in Florida contain ethanol.
“As conservatives, we must understand that states and local communities are best positioned to responsibly regulate the environmental assets within their jurisdictions,” Gaetz said. “This legislation abolishes the EPA effective December 31, 2018, to allow our state and local government partners to implement responsible policies in the interim.”
“I ask for your support in eliminating this abusive and costly agency,” he added, noting that the deadline to co-sponsor was Feb. 3 at noon.
The EPA has been around since Nixon created it 47 years ago. Gaetz would need majority support from both the House and the Senate.