WASHINGTON, DC – In an effort to provide clarification on the use and application of EPA-approved pesticides, Congressman Bob Gibbs introduced the Reducing Regulatory Burdens Act with bipartisan support earlier today. The legislation corrects a 2009 court decision that required a duplicative and unnecessary National Pollution Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permit for pesticides that have already been regulated, tested, and approved by the Environmental Protection Agency under the Federal Insecticide Fungicide and Rodenticide Act (FIFRA).

The bill removes the requirement for NPDES permitting for pesticides already approved by EPA for use under FIFRA, reducing bureaucratic burdens on farmers, ranchers, and local pest control agencies.

“This is a classic example of why so many Americans are frustrated with Washington,” said Congressman Bob Gibbs. “Bureaucratic red tape is making it more difficult and costly for farmers to responsibly protect their crops or local mosquito and pest control agencies to safeguard public health.  Requiring an NPDES permit is unnecessary. It only adds compliance costs, and no new environmental protections.  FIFRA appropriately regulated pesticides for sixty years before the enactment of the Clean Water Act and has regulated pesticides for forty years after.”

Gibbs continued, “Everyone, especially farmers, want clean water. Which is why adding another layer of regulations at the risk of public health is irresponsible.  Our nation has seen outbreaks of West Nile and Zika viruses in the last few years. Rather than waiting for public health emergencies to be declared, we can give local and state health agencies the tools to prevent outbreaks before they start. I want to thank my colleagues on both sides of the aisle for recognizing the importance of this bill.”

A copy of the bill can be found here.