Click here for Fiscal Note

Second Regular Session

Sixty-first General Assembly

LLS NO. R98­0163.01 DHG


BY SENATOR Mutzebaugh;




WHEREAS, On July 31, 1997, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) issued its Notice of Proposed Rulemaking concerning regional haze regulations (the Notice); and

WHEREAS, In the Notice, the EPA cites as legislative authority for the proposed regulations a federal statute directing the EPA to ensure "reasonable progress" toward the attainment of improved visibility in class I areas; and

WHEREAS, Under this rubric of "reasonable progress", the EPA seeks to impose a rigid scheme of steadily increasing requirements nationwide, without exception and without consideration for the very real differences among the various states and regions affected; and

WHEREAS, The EPA has estimated that implementation of this program will cost approximately 2.9 billion dollars, of which 2.07 billion dollars will come from states in the West that already have the cleanest air in the nation; and

WHEREAS, Of such visible pollution as there may be that affects class I areas in the Western states, a significant portion comes from beyond their borders or originates on lands controlled by federal agencies; and

WHEREAS, For these reasons, the proposed regulations are grossly unfair and irrational; and

WHEREAS, We believe that by promulgating these regulations the EPA has far exceeded its congressional mandate to ensure "reasonable progress" in this area; and

WHEREAS, This is only one example of the increasingly common situation in which the EPA oversteps its delegated authority by promulgating regulations that are economically burdensome, scientifically dubious, counterproductive, and contrary to reasonable interpretations of Congressional intent; and

WHEREAS, Such abuses could be prevented or reduced if there were an institutional process by which Congress would have the final say about whether its directives were being faithfully carried out; and

WHEREAS, Colorado has had such a process in place for many years, to the great benefit of the state and its citizens; and

WHEREAS, Under this process, all rules newly adopted or amended by administrative agencies automatically expire within one year unless reviewed, for the limited purpose of determining whether they are within the scope of the agencies' legislatively granted authority, and affirmatively extended in an omnibus bill passed by the legislature each year for that purpose; and

WHEREAS, We believe that the application of such a process to EPA regulations at the national level would keep the agency accountable to Congress, improve the image of the EPA and Congress in the eyes of the American public, avoid overreaching regulations such as the pending Regional Haze Regulations, and benefit both the national economy and the natural environment; now, therefore,

Be It Resolved by the Senate of the Sixty­first General Assembly of the State of Colorado, The House of Representatives concurring herein:

That we, the members of the Colorado General Assembly, hereby request the Congress of the United States to adopt statutes analogous to sections 24­4­103 (8) (d) and 25­7­133, Colorado Revised Statutes, providing for automatic legislative review of all regulations newly adopted or amended by the EPA for the purpose of determining whether they are within the scope of the EPA's legislatively delegated authority and whether they accomplish their policy objectives in a cost­effective manner and further providing for the automatic expiration, within a time certain, of all such regulations not affirmatively extended by act of Congress.

Be it further resolved, That copies of this resolution be sent to each member of Colorado's Congressional delegation and the administrator of the EPA.