Idaho Dispatch

Your Local Media Ally

Press Release: Fulcher Praises SCOTUS Decision on WOTUS Involving Idaho First District Family

By • May 26, 2023

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Today, Congressman Russ Fulcher (R-ID) issued a statement in support of the Supreme Court ruling in Sackett v. EPA, a case that has far-reaching implications for property owners across the nation and the way “waters of the U.S.” (WOTUS) are regulated. The Supreme Court unanimously ruled in favor of the Sacketts, an Idaho family.

“The Supreme Court’s decision to reject the EPA’s expanded definition of WOTUS and uphold the rights of the Sackett family to build their home on their own property stands as a powerful affirmation of individual property rights,” stated Congressman Russ Fulcher. “For Idahoans, water is a lifeline and local control has a long, proud tradition. I commend the Court’s recognition of the Sacketts’ constitutional rights and the significance of protecting Idaho’s ranchers, farmers, irrigators, and landowners from regulatory overreach.”

Since 2021, Congressman Fulcher has urged the EPA to halt any implementation of an expanded definition of WOTUS until the Supreme Court ruled on Sackett v. EPA. In 2021, as the agency looked poised to expand the definition of “navigable waters,” Rep. Fulcher wrote that “rather than soliciting and genuinely listening to input from the general public, small businesses,[…] the Agencies intend to proceed with a rulemaking that will once again confuse regulated parties and lead to the same misinterpretations of legal standards as the Obama Administration’s WOTUS rule.” In 2022, Rep. Fulcher warned that moving ahead with changes to WOTUS would constitute a “misuse of agency resources and taxpayer dollars” and “would only serve to leave the regulated community with prolonged uncertainty regarding regulations and enforcement.” In April of 2023, Rep. Fulcher voted for H.J. Res. 27, which would block the Biden Administration’s WOTUS rule. The bill passed the House of Representatives with a bipartisan vote of 227-198.


In 2007, the Sacketts set out to build a family home on two-thirds-of-an-acre lot near Priest Lake, Idaho. Not long after starting construction on their lot, the EPA ordered all work to stop, with the potential of massive fines because the Sackett property contains ‘navigable waters.” The property in question contains no stream, river, lake, or similar waterbody. However, the EPA contended that the proposed house required a Clean Water Act permit because Priest Lake is a navigable water, a non-navigable creek connects to Priest Lake, the non-navigable creek is connected to a man-made ditch, and the man-made ditch is connected to wetlands. The wetlands are separated from the Sackett lot by a thirty-foot wide paved road.

On September 22nd, 2021, the Sacketts filed a writ of certiorari. On January 24th, 2022, the Supreme Court granted a limited question in the case for consideration. The question presented by the petitioners is whether the Ninth Circuit set forth the proper test for determining whether wetlands are “waters of the United States” under the Clean Water Act.

9 thoughts on “Press Release: Fulcher Praises SCOTUS Decision on WOTUS Involving Idaho First District Family

  1. This is a win, but misses the larger issue: the unconstitutional existence of the lording Administrative State. Regulations are not laws and armed bureaucrats wearing police costumes do not change that fact.

    Idaho’s Sheriffs should interpose on the citizens’ behalf and force the EPA ( and US Marshals who sometimes accompany them) off private property. This starts with an order, followed up with a policy statement and goes as for as arrest for trespass and impounding their vehicles.

    1. 100% nailed it Doug. Please run for sheriff again! I happened to be in the ACSO the day after the election and was disturbed at the unfounded disrespect toward you among the administrative staff. It was basically acknowledgment that they were not doing their jobs and if you had won, they would have to account for their behavior. Having seen the amount of waste and–like in the Sackett’s case–overreach in the department, I would welcome change.

  2. EPA…just one of the federal agencies comprised of unelected bureaucrats who have the boundless authority to materially ruin lives and “convict” citizens without due-process…enacting federal regulations, a.k.a., laws…in secret… without the legislative process. This is “the swamp”…the “deep state.” Thank you for the article, Rep Fulcher…everyone should be made aware of the craziness…

  3. Since the Obama administratiin govt agencies have run roughshod over individual rights. Now with the backing of a senile closet case Grand Wizard, total control of all you do, own, earn or learn is the end game if the party of rhe KKK and socialists. Everything from cookstoves, home heating, mortgage, the sick indoctrination of children, destruction of the border to abolishment of your rights to defend life or property just to name a few. Federal agency beaurocrats are nonelected officials and yet are being given the power to create regulations effecting every aspect of Ameeican life, and these regulations under the judicial system are given the same weight as law. Wake up!

  4. The problem is that U.S. Citizens are not Americans on the land and soil jurisdiction. The Federal government is not our government…it is a British contractor dba the United States of America, Incorporated.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *