Thursday, February 2, 2017

Congress scraps Obama rules on coal mining, guns      
Mark O'Connor fills out his Federal background check paperwork as he purchases a handgun at the K&W Gunworks store on January 5, 2016 in Delray Beach, Florida.
WASHINGTON (AP) — The Republican-controlled Congress on Thursday scrapped Obama-era rules on the environment and guns, counting on a new ally in the White House to help reverse years of what the GOP calls excessive regulation.
The Senate gave final approval to a measure eliminating a rule to prevent coal mining debris from being dumped into nearby streams, while the House backed a separate resolution doing away with extended background checks for gun purchases by some Social Security recipients with mental disabilities.
The Senate's 54-45 vote sends the repeal of the stream protection rule to President Donald Trump, who is expected to sign it. The gun measure awaits Senate action.
Republicans and some Democrats say the coal-mining rule could eliminate thousands of coal-related jobs and ignores dozens of federal, state and local regulations already in place.
The Interior Department, which announced the rule in December, said that it would protect 6,000 miles of streams and 52,000 acres of forests, preventing coal mining debris from being dumped into nearby waters.


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