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Resolution to end stream protection rule heads to Trump’s desk

Rule barred dumping coal mining debris in waterways

WASHINGTON, D.C. – The U.S. Senate voted Thursday to approve a joint resolution disapproving of the stream protection rule.

The Interior Department’s rule barred coal mining companies from dumping mining waste into streams, and was finalized in December.

Coal companies and many Republicans were dissatisfied with the rule because the restrictions made it more expensive to open new mines.

The U.S. House passed the resolution, 228-194, on Wednesday. Rep. Scott Tipton, R-Cortez, voted in favor of the resolution, which now goes to President Trump’s desk for his approval.

The Senate vote was 54-45, with four Democrats in favor and one Republican opposed. Sen. Cory Gardner, R-Colorado, voted for the resolution and Sen. Michael Bennet, D-Colorado, voted against it.

Prior to Thursday’s vote, the Senate had about four hours of debate on the rule and members of both parties spoke on its impacts.

Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Kentucky, said, “We’ll continue to chip away at the regulatory legacy of the Obama years.”

Shira Stein is a reporting intern for The Durango Herald in Washington, D.C., and a student at American University. Reach her at sstein@durangoherald.com and follow her on Twitter @stein_shira.

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