While Democrats are still trying to exploit the tragic death of George Floyd, President Donald Trump is back working to get Americans back to work and unleash the full force of the U.S. economy.
As noted by the Epoch Times, the president signed an executive order on Monday granting emergency powers to government agencies to expedite the permitting process for infrastructure and energy projects.
The White House said that the coronavirus took a heavy toll on the U.S. economy and that the country would face long-term recovery issues if the government did not step in to help.
The Epoch Times reports:
The order aims to expedite transportation infrastructure projects, civil works projects from the Army Corps of Engineers, and infrastructure and other projects on federal land.
According to the June 4 order, the Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ) has, in emergency situations, provided flexibility to government agencies in complying with the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA)—a law that environmentalists view as essential in determining the environmental impacts of infrastructure and other projects.
According to the executive order, the CEQ’s regulations “provide that when emergency circumstances make it necessary to take actions with significant environmental impacts without observing the regulations, agencies may consult with CEQ to make alternative arrangements to take such actions.” Such emergencies would include, among others, natural disasters, threats to national defense, “and employment and economic prosperity.”
Trump argued that ordering state agencies to jump start permit acquisition for companies in a range of fields, such as infrastructure and energy, will unleash investments, increase jobs, and get the economy rolling again.
The plan would also play a big roll in calling for bridge and highway construction, public works, and energy projects such as pipelines and LNG terminals to be fast-tracked through the permitting process.
The Epoch Times continued:
On Jan. 9, Trump announced that his administration would seek to cut what he called “job-killing regulations” in the form of federal permitting and approval processes, which meant that some infrastructure projects were being subjected to delays of decades before construction could begin—if approved at all.
Many of the delays Trump spoke about were a result of the NEPA, which requires federal agencies to assess the environmental impacts of federal projects—a process that has become more complex and protracted over the years. Key components of NEPA’s environmental protections include the requirement for (often lengthy) environmental impact assessments and public consultations.
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