GOP looking to keep the EPA (at least slightly more) honest

posted at 2:41 pm on October 1, 2012 by Erika Johnsen

File this under the “Wouldn’t it be nice?” category.

I don’t know that the Environmental Protection Agency has ever met an idea for a new freedom-crushing rule or regulation it didn’t like, and the general frame of mind of the agency’s many eco-crusaders seems to be that no number of jobs or business endeavors is above an EPA-shakedown, no matter how marginal the ostensible benefit to society. In the magnanimous issuance of these supposedly environmentally-friendly dictates, the EPA generally ‘informs’ its decisions based upon the ‘independent’ research of its Science Advisory Board; or, in other words: We’re the EPA, and we do what we want.

Some of those “do-nothing,” don’t-care-about-jobs Republicans from the House, however, introduced a bill last week that would require the EPA to reform the SAB in an attempt to bring about more transparency, limit conflicts of interest, and compel the oh-so-august body to publish a wider range of scientific opinion when writing their regulations. Via The Hill:

Republicans said reform of the Board is needed because of complaints that a majority of people serving on its advisory panels have received environmental research grants in the last decade from the EPA. The GOP also argues that the Board’s scientific advisory panels often exclude the private sector, and that more public participation and input into panel decisions is needed.

“The need for high-quality, independent scientific advice from the Science Advisory Board has never been more important, as President Obama’s EPA pursues sweeping new regulations based on controversial scientific assertions and conclusions,” said House Science, Space, and Technology Committee Chairman Ralph Hall (R-Texas), the lead sponsor of the bill. “This bill contains basic, common-sense reforms to deal with legitimate concerns about balance, impartiality, independence, and public participation.”

And from the House Committee on Science, Space, and Technology:

Criticisms of the current advisory process include:

  • According to the Congressional Research Service, almost 60 percent of the members of EPA’s standing scientific advisory panels directly received National Center for Environmental Research grants from the Agency since 2000.  These advisors served as investigators for grants representing hundreds of millions of taxpayer dollars. And the research they are being asked to independently review is often directly related to the grants they received.
  • Private sector expertise is often entirely excluded on panels, despite an existing statutory requirement that membership “be fairly balanced in terms of the points of view represented.”
  • Many panel members state strong policy preferences in areas they are being asked to provide impartial scientific reviews, and in certain cases advisors review EPA products based on their own work.
  • Public participation is limited during most SAB meetings, and virtually no ability exists for interested parties to comment on the scope of SAB reviews.

If the science is really so very settled, I just can’t imagine how The Most Transparent Administration Evah could possibly object to considering reforms aimed at addressing some of these concernscan you?


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Here’s a way for Republicans to keep the EPA honest–have President Romney dissolve the agency when he takes office in January.

stukinIL4now on October 1, 2012 at 2:44 PM

According to the Congressional Research Service, almost 60 percent of the members of EPA’s standing scientific advisory panels directly received National Center for Environmental Research grants from the Agency since 2000

How convenient.

rbj on October 1, 2012 at 2:45 PM

Here’s a way for Republicans to keep the EPA honest–have President Romney dissolve the agency when he takes office in January.

stukinIL4now on October 1, 2012 at 2:44 PM

SECONDED! At the very least defund it. When people stop getting paid they’ll leave and the thing will wither on the vine. KILL IT, its the biggest job prevention project in the history of the world.

clippermiami on October 1, 2012 at 2:51 PM

Shut ‘em down – separation of church and state.

The Count on October 1, 2012 at 2:51 PM

According to the Congressional Research Service, almost 60 percent of the members of EPA’s standing scientific advisory panels directly received National Center for Environmental Research grants from the Agency since 2000

…eye candy!

KOOLAID2 on October 1, 2012 at 2:52 PM

IMO, the epa is one the very worse agencies they have in dc! This bunch is beyond horrible to do as much evil against our nation as they can thing of!

Get rid of the whole blooming bunch and defund them!
L

letget on October 1, 2012 at 2:53 PM

If the science is really so very settled, I just can’t imagine how The Most Transparent Administration Evah could possibly object to considering reforms aimed at addressing some of these concerns — can you?

Heh.

Tim_CA on October 1, 2012 at 2:53 PM

Some of those “do-nothing,” don’t-care-about-jobs Republicans from the House, however, introduced a bill last week that would require the EPA to reform the SAB in an attempt to bring about more transparency, limit conflicts of interest, and compel the oh-so-august body to publish a wider range of scientific opinion when writing their regulations.

I have a better idea. A bill to abolish the EPA altogether.

Bitter Clinger on October 1, 2012 at 2:54 PM

Here’s a way for Republicans to keep the EPA honest–have President Romney dissolve the agency when he takes office in January.

stukinIL4now on October 1, 2012 at 2:44 PM

Why wait? Defund it now, nothing to stop that.

GOP is as complicit as liberals, they are all on the take.

riddick on October 1, 2012 at 2:55 PM

how about legislation to require the EPA to consider the impact upon jobs before it does whatever the hell it does. so in addition to an environmental impact statement you’d have an job impact statement? maybe give the president the ability to overrule the EPA. that’d give states that produce coal more reason to vote for a republican president. states like W Va and Pa!

Dr. Demento on October 1, 2012 at 2:56 PM

Just abolish the damn thing and return environmental oversight to the states. Good grief. With Republicans like these…

Charlemagne on October 1, 2012 at 2:56 PM

A construction site in San Antonio found one, as in uno, spider that is on the endangered species list. The $15 Million construction project is suspended indefinitely.

This isn’t 50 miles outside of San An, but in the middle of the city.

Braken Bat Cave Meshweaver, is an endangered, non-venomous species that lives in caves, has no eyes and is virtually translucent.

Read more: http://www.foxnews.com/us/2012/09/15/rare-spider-found-in-texas-shuts-down-15m-construction-project/#ixzz284jajYY7

cajun carrot on October 1, 2012 at 2:59 PM

Because we know the American people would never vote into power another Obama/Pelosi/Reid government any time in the future…

Party of Stupid loves to enable Party of Evil. At what point do you figure that they are not in fact on our side?

astonerii on October 1, 2012 at 3:03 PM

The EPA is one of those things that start off with good intentions and turn into monsters as they try to continually justify their existence. They have turned into shake down artists.

MechanicalBill on October 1, 2012 at 3:04 PM

IIRC, the epa has been hauled to court, even to the SC and have LOST with the gosh horrible things they are doing? They put people, businesses, and everything else the come in contact with under enormous monetary stress defending against them! And to boot, it takes years to get a result against them!
L

letget on October 1, 2012 at 3:06 PM

A construction site in San Antonio found one, as in uno, spider that is on the endangered species list. The $15 Million construction project is suspended indefinitely.

WHAP!!

Damn! Did you see that freakin’ spider?! He was a big un’.

BacaDog on October 1, 2012 at 3:07 PM

Only way to “reform” the EPA is to FIRE everyone in it and start over.

GarandFan on October 1, 2012 at 3:09 PM

The EPA is one of those things that start off with good intentions and turn into monsters as they try to continually justify their existence. They have turned into shake down artists.

MechanicalBill on October 1, 2012 at 3:04 PM

No, the EPA was started with the intention of crippling America and voted for by morons who were too stupid to look at the motives behind the people who championed it as a good intention. The EAP was created by the same people who promoted Silent Spring the start of the current Environmentalist Red on the Inside, Green on the outside groups.

While it was enacted under Nixon, it was not a conservative or Republican initiative.

Started as a moronic cave to the leftists, not as good intentions.

astonerii on October 1, 2012 at 3:11 PM

Kill it and make a record of anybody that ever worked there.

DanMan on October 1, 2012 at 3:16 PM

Here’s a way for Republicans to keep the EPA honest–have President Romney dissolve the agency when he takes office in January.

stukinIL4now on October 1, 2012 at 2:44 PM

SECONDED! At the very least defund it. When people stop getting paid they’ll leave and the thing will wither on the vine. KILL IT, its the biggest job prevention project in the history of the world.

Thirded!! Now, about that Federal Dept. of Education….can it be next. Please?

Only way to “reform” the EPA is to FIRE everyone in it and start over. suggest they find gainful and productive employment in the private sector.

FIFY

hawkeye54 on October 1, 2012 at 3:28 PM

According to the Congressional Research Service, almost 60 percent of the members of EPA’s standing scientific advisory panels directly received National Center for Environmental Research grants from the Agency since 2000. These advisors served as investigators for grants representing hundreds of millions of taxpayer dollars. And the research they are being asked to independently review is often directly related to the grants they received.

I’m wondering how many members of those panels are also members of the Sierra Club, Greenpeace, the Nature Conservancy, Natural Resources Defense Council et al.

Not to mention how many EPA employees belong to these same groups.

If BATFE were staffed by members of the National Rifle Association, I’m sure the MSM would scream bloody murder (literally). But from the outset, EPA has been permeated by deep-ecology “true believers”, with nary a peep of protest from same. And Democratic Presidents keep appointing “true believers” to run the agency.

Oh, right, I forgot. The deep-ecos are “the good guys”.

The more damage to our society they can do, the better they believe it is. Because each bit of “creative destruction” brings us that much closer to their carbon-neutral, environmentally-benign, Holy Wind and Holy Sun-powered, Edenic Utopia.

Where the lion shall lie down with the lamb so the “true believers” (nobility) can pet them. While watching the workers (peasants) spreading night soil in the rice paddies by hand from dawn to dusk.

Turning out the lights on Western Civilization can’t possibly hurt anyone. Just ask them, they’ll tell you.

clear ether

eon

eon on October 1, 2012 at 3:29 PM

I see the motion has been made and seconded, all those in favor of abolishing the EPA say “aye”.
.
.
AYE ! ! !

listens2glenn on October 1, 2012 at 3:34 PM

Only way to “reform” the EPA is to FIRE everyone in it and start over.

GarandFan on October 1, 2012 at 3:09 PM

.
Why not just “fire” everyone in it, and close it down ?

listens2glenn on October 1, 2012 at 3:36 PM

Since all revenue-raising bills must originate in the House of Representatives, the GOP-controlled House should cut ALL funding for the EPA until it rescinds all “rules” not specifically mandated by Congress.

Also, any scientific advisory panels consulted by the EPA should have an even number of members and 50% representation by the regulated industries. In order to get a majority vote, the EPA would have to make some concessions to the industries so that compliance is at least technically and economically feasible.

Steve Z on October 1, 2012 at 3:51 PM

Part of Tricky Dick’s legacy.

Akzed on October 1, 2012 at 3:51 PM

I see the motion has been made and seconded, all those in favor of abolishing the EPA say “aye”.
.
.
AYE ! ! !

listens2glenn on October 1, 2012 at 3:34 PM

Too bad we have absolutely no representation in Congress.

riddick on October 1, 2012 at 3:52 PM

Honest? Really? Where’s the Over Sight? eSTAB-lishment Republicans better get it through their thick skulls that nobody’s buying their BS anymore! Either do something or don’t, but stop talking about it & then doing nothing or worse providing political cover for the Dems, cause all that accomplishes is getting you closer to the door and out of the Power you so desperately are trying to hold on too!

For those following, How to take on the Obama Enemy media: http://paratisiusa.blogspot.com/2012/09/an-open-letter-to-those-who-should-know.html?spref=tw

God Bless AMerica!

paratisi on October 1, 2012 at 4:02 PM

Can you imagine the primordial screams from the Left if anyone actually brought a bill to the floor disbanding the EPA…?

Seven Percent Solution on October 1, 2012 at 4:11 PM

Here’s hoping president Romney will gut the EPA, DOJ, TSA, DHS, etc, etc. and get rid of the low-life, pond scum liberals and useless bureaucrats in those organizations. And here’s hoping that the gutless repubics in congress will support him. God Save America!!

ultracon on October 1, 2012 at 4:22 PM

The EPA needs to be: defunded, dissolved and all of the property in it sold piecemeal at auction.

The last part would get some positive revenue, and the reduction in government size would give a nice little start to lowering the deficit.

After that there is: Agriculture, Education, Labor, Energy… a whole raft of things not given to the federal government to do that it has gotten its fingers into… HUD, Fannie, Freddie, Sallie, Ginnie… the den of corruption… just imagine all of those defunded, dissolved and all the property sold off. Heartwarming.

ajacksonian on October 1, 2012 at 4:41 PM

Here’s a way for Republicans to keep the EPA honest–have President Romney dissolve the agency when he takes office in January.

stukinIL4now on October 1, 2012 at 2:44 PM

YES. Their regulations and laws passed by Congress will remain, and to a considerable extent is a self-sustaining mechanism. The envirofascists go to court and sue, and if they win they get to bill the federal government for what they submit as costs, and that makes it a very profitable business.

Even in the EPA was poofed tomorrow, we’d still have a lot of work to reverse their damage. Stopping further damage is only a small start.

slickwillie2001 on October 1, 2012 at 5:17 PM

Many panel members state strong policy preferences in areas they are being asked to provide impartial scientific reviews, and in certain cases advisors review EPA products based on their own work.

Gee, just like climate change!

burt on October 1, 2012 at 7:56 PM

These government agencies start out for the good of the land and grow into a government within a government. Look at the DEC started by President Carter to get us off foreign oil. There are 16,000 employees and a budget of over 23+ billion and we are still on foreign oil. EPA is no different and they get drunk with power and have the ability to make laws and punish. The couple in AZ that did all the permits and proper fees only to have the EPA fine them with a ridicules ruling that made national headlines. These agencies turn into federal entitlement programs stuffed with federal employees drawing a paycheck for being there. Take your time and look over this listing and you’ll see it’s bad.
http://www.usa.gov/directory/federal/index.shtml

mixplix on October 2, 2012 at 7:05 AM