Nebraska Attorney General Doug Peterson is applauding a court ruling over the EPA’s “Waters of the U.S.” rule.
The U.S. Supreme Court decided federal district courts, rather than appellate courts have jurisdiction in such cases.
Peterson says this helps opponents of the rules, because a district court judge has indicated there is merit to states challenging the rule.
“The Clean Water Act specifically provides for this – that much of management of waters is a joint effort by the state and the federal agency, but that the states are the primary players for their jurisdictional area,” Peterson tells Nebraska Radio Network.
He says any legal challenges to the expansion of Waters of the U.S. rule may be moot, because the EPA under the Trump Administration is moving to revert back to the previous rule.
“For landowners in Nebraska, the definition prior to Waters of the U.S. rule being proposed is far better,” Peterson says. “It’s better for state control. Frankly, from an environmental standpoint, the Nebraska agencies were doing a very good job of managing our waters.”
Peterson says Nebraska and 13 other states were part of an effort challenging Waters of the U.S.
They argue any change to the Clean Water Act should have been made by Congress, not through the EPA’s rule making process.
The states are reviewing their options, according to Peterson.
“We work closely with them [EPA] with regards to any type of fines or litigation of those who violate our Clean Water laws,” he says. “My definite preference is rescinding the rule, and that’s what the EPA is trying to do right now.”
Waters of the U.S. was put in place in 2015 under the Obama Administration.
AUDIO: Mike Loizzo reports [:44]