NAHB Chairman Barry Rutenberg on Sen. Barrasso’s Water Bill

April 02, 2012

WaterBarry Rutenberg, chairman of the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) and a home builder from Gainesville, Fla., today issued the following statements regarding S. 2245, the Preserve Waters of the United States Act.  Introduced by Sen. John Barrasso (R-Wyo.) and 29 other Senators from across the country, this legislation will prevent the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (Corps) from using a draft guidance to dramatically expand the scope of the Clean Water Act:

“We commend Sen. Barrasso for introducing this bill to compel the EPA and Corps to go back to the drawing board and craft a balanced approach to federal jurisdiction of the nation’s waterways,” Rutenberg said.

“The EPA and Corps are getting ready to issue a guidance document that will evade the more transparent rule-making process to eliminate all reasonable limits on the scope of Clean Water Act jurisdiction. As a result, the federal government’s reach would extend to all waters, including storm sewers and retention basins and seasonal streams.

“This blatant regulatory overreach would lead to many more land development, road construction and residential projects requiring federal permits and would exacerbate permitting delays. In turn, this will increase construction costs, cause job losses, drive down housing affordability and hamper economic growth.

“The nation’s home builders have long supported the goals of the Clean Water Act, which is called into play when homes are built near rivers or wetlands and when builders take steps to avoid stormwater runoff from construction sites. But recklessly broadening the scope of the Act to include virtually all waters – including roadside ditches — within its regulatory reach will severely restrict the industry’s ability to recover and make new homes more costly without a corresponding environmental benefit,” Rutenberg said.

The National Association of Home Builders is a Washington-based trade association representing more than 140,000 members involved in remodeling, home building, multifamily construction, property management, subcontracting, design, housing finance, building product manufacturing and other aspects of residential and light commercial construction. NAHB is affiliated with 800 state and local home builders associations around the country. NAHB’s builder members will construct about 80 percent of the new housing units projected for this year.

Categories: Education

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Mitch Levinson is the author of “Internet Marketing: The Key to Increased New Home Sales” published by BuilderBooks. He is an Internet marketing expert with expertise in search engine optimization, website development, email marketing, social media and CRM consulting services. He is known for creating effective programs that can be tracked through analytics to prove effectiveness and ROI. Mitch is founder and president of MLC New Home Marketing and MLC FlatFee Realty, as well as managing partner of mRELEVANCE, LLC, a Marketing, Communication, Interactive agency with offices in Chicago and Atlanta. He currently leads the Chicago team. A Multi-Million Dollar Sales Producer who earned an MBA in Computer Information Systems and eCommerce, he brings a unique perspective and experience to the field of real estate communications. Mitch combines the two interests in order to help home builders and developers gain a competitive advantage through the Internet and technology. When he isn’t behind a computer, he enjoys participating in sports and coaching his kids’ teams. Mitch resides in Arlington Heights, Ill., a northwest suburb of Chicago, with his family, which includes two rambunctious labs. Visit my Google+ profile.

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