Attorney General Herbert H. Slatery III joined a 17-state coalition this week to support farmers and landowners by urging the Trump administration to adopt its proposed replacement of the Obama-era, Waters of the United States rule.
The coalition, in comments filed late Monday, argued the Trump administration’s proposal would restore reasonable, predictable lines between waters subject to federal and state regulation.
“The proposed rule, unlike the rule that it would replace, respects the traditional role of Tennessee and all other states to regulate their own water resources,” said Attorney General Slatery.
The coalition believes the new rule will correct flaws within the 2015 regulation, which extended authority of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers far beyond what Congress intended and the Constitution permits.
The Trump Administration proposal also shows respect for the primary responsibility and right of states to regulate their own water resources.
The 2015 WOTUS rule, if implemented, would have taken jurisdiction over natural resources from states and asserted federal authority over almost any body of water, including roadside ditches, short-lived streams and many other areas where water may flow once every 100 years.
Tennessee signed the West Virginia-led letter with attorneys general from Alabama, Arkansas, Georgia, Idaho, Indiana, Kansas, Louisiana, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Texas and Utah.
Read the public comments filing here: https://www.tn.gov/content/dam/tn/attorneygeneral/documents/pr/2019/pr19-12-letter.pdf