The Idaho Senate approved a memorial critical of a proposed expansion of the federal Clean Water Act. The House approved the non-binding memorial Feb. 18. Congress is considering The Clean Water Restoration Act, sponsored by Wisconsin Democratic Sen. Russ Feingold, which could broaden federal water oversight from all navigable waters to all waters, including wetlands and intermittent streams.
Sen. Steve Bair, R-Blackfoot, said that expanded federal reach would be bad for Idaho. "It would be a financial burden on the state, one we can't afford," he said. "This could possibly be imposed on ditches and canals ... That could affect agriculture adversely."