Nebraska Cattlemen support states rights in water oversight

Jul 22, 2011
by WLJ

Nebraska Cattlemen (NC), along with 120 other organizations, signed a letter recently to the U.S.

House of Representatives stating strong support for the Clean Water Cooperative Federalism Act (H.R. 2018). The bill was passed by the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee on June 22. The House passed the bill in a 239-184 vote on July 14.

While the bill now heads to the Senate, the Obama administration is threatening to veto H.R. 2018. A statement released July 12 by the White House Office of Management and Budget stated, “If the President is presented with this legislation, his senior advisers would recommend that he veto the bill.” It also states that the administration opposes the bill H.R. 2018 “because it would significantly undermine the Clean Water Act (CWA) and could adversely affect public health, the economy, and the environment.”

According to NC president Chuck Folken, “The bill restores the intended state-federal balance of responsibility for enforcing the CWA. EPA seems dead set on over-reaching their authority, making beef production more and more difficult.” Folken further shared that should the bill pass, states would be given the final say over water pollution standards and enforcement as well as permit approvals for mining operations.

NC policy states, “Nebraska Cattlemen urges Congress to recognize states’ abilities to best manage the water within their jurisdictions and that the CWA shall not be modified to usurp state primacy issues.” — WLJ