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Lawmaker Floats Proposal to Shutter EPA

A House Republican is reportedly working on a bill that would “completely abolish” the Environmental Protection Agency.

A House Republican is reportedly working on a bill that would “completely abolish” the Environmental Protection Agency.

According to an email obtained by The Huffington Post, Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-Fla.) wrote to other legislators asking for co-sponsors on the bill, which aims to close the EPA by the end of the year.

“Today, the American people are drowning in rules and regulations promulgated by unelected bureaucrats; and the Environmental Protection Agency has become an extraordinary offender,” Gaetz wrote in the email. “Our small businesses cannot afford to cover the costs associated with compliance, too often leading to closed doors and unemployed Americans.”

The legislation would be the first bill sponsored by Gaetz, who is a freshman congressman.

On the campaign trail, President Donald Trump also proposed closing the EPA, but has since said that he supports some of the agency’s work.

Trump’s pick for EPA head, Scott Pruitt, has also been a long-time critic of the agency. During confirmation hearings, however, Pruitt said he supports the EPA’s existence.

The EPA was founded 46 years ago and is responsible for some of the country’s hallmark environmental regulations, including the Clean Air Act and the Clean Water Act.

The agency has also been at the center of numerous controversies including the Flint Water Crisis and the Gold King Mine spill in 2015.

Trade groups in the chemicals and energy industries have criticized the agency for increasingly stringent regulations from the Obama Administration related to plant emissions.

To help curb regulations, Trump signed an executive order earlier this week that would require government agencies to remove two regulations for every one new rule proposed.

In his email, Gaetz did not offer any details on what other government agencies would be in charge of laws governed by the EPA, or if those laws would be repealed.

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