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Pruitt defines EPA mission in new administration

Agribusiness Matters 3-6-17

The first agency to feel the pinch of the Trump administration, appears to be the EPA.

The new administrator, a formidable foe of expanded government authority, sets the agenda for the years ahead.

Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Scott Pruitt told the American Farm Bureau Federation he wants to ensure the EPA follows statutes set by Congress. He says the agency must work within its authority, not beyond. “When you do rule making whether it’s in clean air, or clean water we have to keep in mind that we only have the authority that congress has given this agency.”

Pruitt says it’s time for the EPA and other agencies to follow the rules when it comes to creating regulations.

Confirmation of Pruitt’s actions come from a source within the agency who works as a rank and file scientist.

His posting indicates,”The entire agency is under lockdown, the website, Facebook, Twitter, you name it, is static and can’t be updated.All reports, findings, permits and studies are frozen and not to be released. No presentations or meetings with outside groups are to be scheduled. Any Press contacting us are to be directed to the Press Office which is also silenced and will give no response.”

For some that would be viewed as restricting federal officers from doing their job. For others it is viewed as proof the leadership is reining in those who have been outside their boundaries for many years.

The EPA is named by farmers and agribusiness as the most intrusive federal agency. The Trump administration has appointed Scott Pruitt, former Oklahoma Attorney General as the new Administrator. Republicans have indicated they want to shrink the agency and deny it any means to “over reach” its mission as defined by Congress.

This inside posting from an EPA scientist may indicate the plan is working. “So I work at the EPA and yeah it’s as bad as you are hearing: The entire agency is under lock down, the website, facebook, twitter, you name it, is static and can’t be updated.”