Click here to watch Chairman Barrasso’s remarks.  

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Today, U.S. Senator John Barrasso (R-WY), chairman of the Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works (EPW), delivered the following remarks at a superfund, waste management, and regulatory oversight subcommittee hearing titled, “Legislative Hearing on S. 2421, the Fair Agricultural Reporting Method (FARM) Act.” Barrasso is a cosponsor of the FARM Act.

The committee heard testimony from Todd Mortenson, owner and operator of Mortenson Ranch; Bill Satterfield, executive director of Delmarva Poultry Industry, Inc.; and Mark Kuhn, county supervisor of Floyd County, Iowa.

For more information on their testimonies click here.

Senator Barrasso’s remarks:

“The FARM Act it is important and bipartisan legislation that will help bring clarity to ranchers and farmers in Wyoming, and across the country.

“I cosponsored the bill and strongly support it and compliment Senator Fischer for its introduction.

“The Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act, or CERCLA, was enacted by Congress to give EPA the authority to respond to hazardous industrial pollution that threatens the environment and public health.

“It is an important and necessary law that provides tools to clean up polluted sites, and hold responsible parties accountable. 

“When applied to the everyday activities on ranches and farms, it makes very little sense.

“That is why, in 2008, the EPA finalized a rule to clarify that farms and ranches as exempted from air emissions reporting requirements under CERCLA.

“Even the Obama Administration agreed that farmers and ranchers should be relieved of some of this burdensome regulation.

“On April 2017, the D.C. Circuit Court nullified the 2008 rule, mandating new, onerous reporting requirements for up to 100,000 farms and ranches.

“Now Mr. Chairman, I was home in Wyoming the last two weekends.

“The one weekend in Riverton, Wyoming, with the Fremont County Cattlemen’s Association and last weekend in Marbleton, Wyoming, at the Green River Valley Cattlemen’s Association, I continue to hear how out of touch the environmental regulations have become.

“This is a textbook example.

“The people who labor year-round to feed, clothe, and house our nation should not be burdened with the time and money it takes to estimate, and record, and to file emissions reports that even the EPA has said it does not need or want.

“That’s why enacting the FARM Act is critical.

“It is a commonsense bill to protect ranchers and farmers in Wyoming, and around the nation, from punishing and unnecessary federal government regulations.

“It eliminates regulatory uncertainty by putting into law the CERCLA animal air emissions exemption that producers have relied on since EPA’s 2008 rule.

“I believe it’s an important bill, I would like to again thank Chairman Rounds and Ranking Member Booker for holding this hearing and especially I would like to thank Senator Fischer for bringing it to us, brining it the Senate as we move forward on this bill.”