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03.21.2012 1

Comment period winds down for the president’s oceans and lakes power play; House Resources Committee wants it extended

U.S. Oceans PolicyBy Rebekah Rast — Approximately 71 percent of the earth’s surface is covered in water.  That makes things a bit murky when deciding who controls the world’s waters.

The federal government is beginning to get its hands wet setting regulations and restrictions in certain parts of our coastlines, lakes and oceans.

But how far do these restrictions need to go?

Much of the details aren’t known yet, but President Obama is moving full-speed ahead on his Executive Order “Stewardship of the Ocean, Our Coasts, and the Great Lakes.”

This effort includes a land, water and power grab unlike any America has seen.  Obama plans to create a network of no-take marine reserves all over the world.  To add to this usurping of power by the Administration, states, localities, tribes and individuals will have no say in this massive water grab—not even Congress.

The White House claims this Executive Order “strengthens ocean governance and coordination, establishes guiding principles for ocean management, and adopts a flexible framework for effective coastal and marine spatial planning to address conservation, economic activity, user conflict, and sustainable use of the ocean, our coasts and the Great Lakes.”

But the truth is this is nothing more than an absurd power grab by the Obama administration.  To control the country’s lakes, oceans and coastlands by issuing strict usage regulations and restrictions will only hurt such livelihoods as farming, fishing and logging.

U.S. House of Representatives’ Natural Resources Committee Chairman Doc Hastings has repeated his call for the Obama administration to extend public comment period on the national ocean policy.

A press releases from the Natural Resources Committee states:

Chairman Hastings first requested a 90-day extension in a letter sent on February 23, 2012.  This request was refused and only an additional 30 days were provided.

The likelihood of deterring new investment and job creation is too great to rush the implementation of this questionable new federal bureaucracy,” writes Hastings in the letter.  “More than 15 agencies had over two years to construct this far-reaching policy, so it is certainly reasonable to allow more than just 75 days for comment by those whose communities and livelihoods could be harmed and negatively affected by the President’s Executive Order.”

For more on this extensive power grab by our president and his administration please read: Many states affected by Obama’s Great Lakes and Oceans power grab, Obama’s Oceans and Lakes Power Play and Obama’s Ocean and Great Lakes Policy is Clear as Mud.

Rebekah Rast is a contributor. You can follow her on Twitter at @RebekahRast.

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