A federal court ruled today that President Obama’s Waters of the U.S. (WOTUS) rule cannot be enforced nationwide. In a 2-1 ruling, the Cincinnati-based Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit said it appears likely that the rule is illegal.
The president of the Wisconsin Corn Growers Association today applauded this decision to halt implementation nationwide, including in Wisconsin, EPA’s WOTUS rule that has been in effect since last August.
“The WOTUS rule is confusing and unworkable, so this nationwide hold on implementation is welcome until EPA can put forth a rule that makes environmental and economic sense” said Casey Kelleher, Whitewater.
The corn growers said the rule would extend the EPA and Army Corps of Engineers’ regulatory reach to an untold number of small bodies of water, including roadside ditches and short-lived streams or any other area where the agencies believe water may flow once every 100 years.
“Even EPA’s partner in crafting the rule, the Army Corps of Engineers, said WOTUS is unworkable, and that the entire economic analysis used by EPA to support the rule had no basis on economics or science,” said Kelleher.
In August, a federal judge in North Dakota imposed a stay of the rule, but only in 13 states, which did not include Wisconsin.
The National Corn Growers Association had joined several other ag groups in a federal lawsuit to strike down WOTUS. Wisconsin’s Attorney General joined with 17 other states seeking the same legal remedy.
WCGA is a membership organization that represents the interest of state corn growers in the growth and management of corn grown for on-farm feeding and commercial sale. WCGA works with other organizations in areas of mutual concern, and brings together corn growers to provide information and education at regional corn conferences and the annual Wisconsin Corn/Soy EXPO. As part of NCGA, WCGA represents corn grower interests nationally and internationally and also sponsors annual corn yield contests.