By Whitney Delbridge
A new bill is making its way through the House of Representatives that will protect farmers from over-regulation by the government.
Congressman Robert Hurt says he listened to the complaints of agricultural workers in his district and it spurred him to introduce this bill last month.
The bill - known as the Preserving Rural Resources Act - would allow farmers to continue to manage their land and operations without federal overreach from the EPA and U.S. Corp of Engineers.
Hurt says he wants to make it feasible for farmers to increase their production while complying with federal regulations.
Much of the bill focuses on clarifying rules in the Clean Water Act that determine how farmers can modify their land, specifically farm ponds.
The rules have cost property-owners thousands of dollars in the past.
Hurt says Washington has been out of touch with the needs of farmers and he is hoping the new bill will change that.
"Washington has gotten too far removed from the people it was intended to represent and that's a fundamental problem, " Hurt said.
The bipartisan bill was co-sponsored by Democrat Jim Costa of California. The House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure will consider it this summer.