Photo: Georgia Department of Agriculture

Agriculture Commissioner Gary W. Black is applauding action recently taken by the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Georgia to grant a preliminary injunction blocking enforcement of the burdensome Waters of the United States (WOTUS) rule.

“This rule was a blatant overreach of the federal government,” Commissioner Black said. “We are pleased that the courts clearly saw the irreparable harm this frontal assault on private property rights could cause our farmers.”

The federal court sided with Georgia and ten other states agreeing that the new rule from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and Environmental Protection Agency unlawfully expands the federal government’s regulatory reach over local streams, lands and farms.

The other states involved in the recent injunction include Alabama, Florida, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, North Carolina, South Carolina, Utah, West Virginia and Wisconsin. The Georgia injunction is the second time a federal court has ruled against WOTUS, with an injunction in 2015 preventing the rule from being implemented in Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, Colorado, Idaho, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Mexico, North Dakota, South Dakota and Wyoming. In total, the two court rulings protect 24 states from WOTUS implementation.

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