Mayor Suthers, EPA praise Trump Administration for new EPA regulations

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COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo (KKTV) -- Colorado Springs Mayor John Suthers and the EPA are praising the Trump Administration for loosening federal water regulations for rivers, streams, and wetlands, handing more control to state governments.

EPA Region 8 Administrator Greg Sopkin speaks at a press conference with Mayor John Suthers and others on Thursday (source KKTV).

The move is the latest in a series of actions taken by President Trump to roll back environmental protections.

The new rules could also affect people in Colorado. Because of the climate here, supporters say there are a lot of times when there are "temporary" bodies of water on someones property, like a ditch or a pond, which can cause some confusion

The new rules are aimed at simplifying what is and what isn't a body of water after what they say "decades of uncertainty." It's all broken down into four categories.

Colorado springs mayor John Suthers says the new rules will be good for businesses and farmers while also still protecting interstate waterways like Monument Creek and Falcon Creek.

"When you've got a couple isolated ponds filled by rainwater or something like that that don't contribute to our interstate water and don't impact them, this is not appropriate jurisdiction of the federal government. The state government is fully capable of regulating those non interstate waterways," he explained at a press conference held Thursday.

Greg Sopkin, Regional Administrator for Region 8 of EPA agreed.

"This is just another step in the administration is taking to make rules that are lawful and make sense to the businesses, the farmers, and the landowners of the United States," he said.

Opponents of the new rules say they are dangerous especially at a time when there are more pollutants in the water.

The changes are expected to take effect in April. We'll let you know if there are any legal challenges.

You can read the press release here.