Iowa Farm Bureau members in Washington, D.C., last week asked Congress to help stop a rule that would greatly increase the government’s reach over their farms.

Language in a rule the Envir­onmental Protection Agency (EPA) says was intended to clarify its jurisdiction over waterways instead muddies the water with broad terminology that is open to interpretation, the Farm Bureau members said.

"The way they want to define waters of the U.S. is so vague, it’s going to be a free-for-all if it doesn’t get pulled back," said Audubon County Farm Bureau member Randy Dreher. "It’s a sizable (increase) of waters that would be under their jurisdiction."

The EPA proposal was a key point of discussion as more than 40 farmers on the Iowa Farm Bureau’s annual July national policy trip met with the state’s Congressional delegation on Capitol Hill. Other...