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Audit: Anti-farm ads did not violate rules

What’s Upstream? is in the clear

— A federal audit has found an anti-farm campaign did not violate federal lobbying rules.

The investigation centered on the What’s Upstream? campaign that targeted farms as being the cause of polluted waters and dead fish.

The audit report was published Monday and said the campaign did not advocate for specific legislation.

Congressman Dan Newhouse of Sunnyside just two weeks ago called for a review of the federal Environmental Protection Agency, which used public funds for the campaign.

Newhouse made his appeal in a letter to newly appointed Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Scott Pruitt, asking him to follow up on the agency’s commitment to review its grant protocols.

The review request stems from the agency’s grant of $25 million over five years to Northwest Indian Fisheries Commission.

Washington state tribes then used the money to pay for the anti-agriculture What’s Upstream? political campaign designed to pressure lawmakers into passing more stringent water quality regulations.

In December, Newhouse demanded the Environmental Protection Agency halt federal grant spending in the wake of an investigation of the campaign.

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