The EPA vs. the Sacketts

Over on the home page, I explain the case underlying the Supreme Court’s recent 9–0 decision against the Environmental Protection Agency. Unfortunately, this is far from over — the Supreme Court didn’t say that the Idaho couple may build a house on the land they bought; all the Court said is that the couple has a right to sue the EPA and argue its case that the lot doesn’t contain “wetlands.”

A quick update to the piece: The EPA wasn’t able to get me a response to the Sacketts’ lawyer’s comments in time for publication, but I received a statement this morning:

EPA does not discuss ongoing enforcement matters. EPA is aware that there are other properties in the Priest Lake area upon which wetlands have been filled. Much of this fill (including a road and fills in the immediate vicinity of the Sacketts) was done prior to enactment of the Clean Water Act (CWA) and is therefore not prohibited by the CWA.  Other projects have been permitted by the Army Corps of Engineers.

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