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AG Schmidt backs Supreme Court review of EPA runoff regulations

Release Date: Dec 09, 2015

TOPEKA – (December 9, 2015) – Kansas Attorney General Derek Schmidt today asked the U.S. Supreme Court to review a lower court decision regarding the Environmental Protection Agency’s efforts to dictate how states regulate runoff from sources such as farmland, construction sites, and urban areas.  

Schmidt led a bipartisan group of 22 state attorneys general in filing a brief asking the Court to take up the case after the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 3rd Circuit upheld the EPA's effort to impose detailed nutrient and sediment runoff limits on states in the Chesapeake Bay region under the guise of setting the total maximum daily load (TMDL) for those pollutants.

“This case has never been about one geographic region or one particular plan to manage runoff,” Schmidt said. “The issue is whether the EPA can expand its authority under the Clean Water Act to micromanage how states meet federal water-quality standards. Ultimately, this is about whether a federal agency has the authority to upend state and local economies by telling states – and ultimately landowners – how to use their land and natural resources. We believe the EPA has exceeded its authority and our nation’s highest court should be the one to ultimately decide this case.”

Kansas filed the brief in American Farm Bureau Federation, et al., v. United States Environmental Protection Agency, et al., Case No. 15-599. Kansas is supporting the plaintiffs – the American Farm Bureau Federation and others – in asking the Supreme Court to hear the case and reverse the 3rd Circuit’s decision.

States joining the Kansas-led brief were Indiana, Missouri, Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, Colorado, Georgia, Kentucky, Michigan, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Carolina, South Dakota, Texas, Utah, Wisconsin and Wyoming.

A copy of the states’ brief is available at http://1.usa.gov/1IFuDnY .

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