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Attorney General Carr Blocks Burdensome Federal ‘Waters of the U.S.’ Rule

June 11, 2018

Legal victory brings immediate relief to Georgia agribusiness, property owners

ATLANTA –  Georgia Attorney General Chris Carr has won his battle to block the burdensome, overreaching “Waters of the U.S.” rule with a major victory in U.S. District Court  that brings immediate relief to Georgia’s agribusiness and property owners.

Carr led an 11-state coalition in fighting the 2015 Obama administration rule that would have allowed the federal government to regulate nearly all private and state waters, including thousands of streams, creeks, ponds and ditches.

In response to Carr’s challenge, the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Georgia has granted a preliminary injunction that blocks the Waters of the U.S. rule and gives authority back to the states.

“When the federal government has reached too far, Georgia has refused to stand idly by,” said Attorney General Chris Carr. “That’s why we led a multi-state coalition to fight this unlawful government takeover of our private waterways.  We are proud to win this victory for Georgia citizens and will continue to fight against federal overreach.”

The court also agreed that if the “Waters of the U.S.” rule became effective, the states would suffer harm in the form of both a “loss of sovereignty and unrecoverable monetary losses.” The court decided that blocking the rule is in the best interest of the public because it saves “farmers, homeowners, and small businesses” from having to “devote time and expense to obtain federal permits … to comply with a rule that is likely to be invalidated.”

In addition to Georgia, Carr’s coalition fighting the rule also included Alabama, Florida, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, North Carolina, South Carolina, Utah, West Virginia, and Wisconsin.