Trump signs or­der on un­do­ing wa­ters rule

He also moves black col­leges ini­tia­tive

USA TODAY US Edition - - NEWS - Gre­gory Korte @gre­go­ryko­rte

Pres­i­dent Trump’s new­est ex­ec­u­tive or­ders tar­get a water-pro­tec­tion rule and el­e­vate an ini­tia­tive on his­tor­i­cally black col­leges and uni­ver­si­ties into the White House.

Trump signed the ex­ec­u­tive or­ders in back-to-back sign­ing cer­e­monies at the White House on Tues­day. The first seeks to undo the Wa­ters of the United States rule, an Obama ad­min­is­tra­tion reg­u­la­tion that sought to rein­ter­pret the Clean Water Act to ex­tend fed­eral pro­tec­tions to smaller rivers and streams.

“It has truly run amok. It’s been a dis­as­ter,” Trump said in a Roo­sevelt Room cer­e­mony. He said the rule ex­tended fed­eral reg­u­la­tions “to nearly ev­ery pud­dle, to ev­ery ditch on a farmer’s land, or any­where else they de­cide, right? It was a mas­sive power grab.”

Trump’s plan of at­tack is sim­i­lar to his ear­lier or­der aimed at a con­sumer-pro­tec­tion reg­u­la­tion called the Fidu­ciary Duty rule. Be­cause the rule was fi­nal­ized in 2015, the Trump ad­min­is­tra­tion will have to start the reg­u­la­tory process from the be­gin­ning to re­move it from the books.

But the Wa­ters rule has been blocked by a fed­eral ap­peals court in Cincin­nati.

A sec­ond ex­ec­u­tive or­der will move the fed­eral ini­tia­tive on His­tor­i­cally Black Col­leges and Uni­ver­si­ties, or HBCUs, into the White House Do­mes­tic Pol­icy Coun­cil from the Depart­ment of Ed­u­ca­tion, where it was housed un­der the Obama ad­min­is­tra­tion.

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