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Tags: sarah huckabee sanders | arkansas | lawsuit | epa | ozone | biden administration

Gov. Huckabee Sanders: Arkansas Suing EPA After Ozone Plan Rejected

By    |   Thursday, 16 February 2023 07:33 PM EST

Promising to thwart the Biden administration from "abusing their regulatory powers," Republican Arkansas Gov. Sarah Huckabee Sanders said Thursday her state is suing the Environmental Protection Agency after it rejected a plan to comply with revised ozone regulations.

"During my inaugural address, I promised to stop the meddling hand of big government," Sanders said during a news conference at the Oswald Generating Station in Little Rock. "Today, I'm announcing that I have asked Attorney General [Tim] Griffin to sue the EPA to get the overregulating, micromanaging bureaucratic tyrants in Washington off of Arkansans' backs."

In 2015, the EPA revised federal ozone national ambient air quality standards, where states must take measures to prevent significant emissions from affecting downwind states. The EPA then allowed states to come up with their own standard implementation plan and submit them to the EPA for approval.

Sanders said Arkansas submitted its plan in 2019, under GOP Gov. Asa Hutchinson, based on the best available data and consistent with EPA guidance. But it was rejected Monday by the agency, which wants Arkansas and 25 other states to implement its own plan.

Sanders said the EPA did not give Arkansas a chance to revise its plan to fit its new guidelines.

"We took into account all available data at the time to comply with federal regulations while still managing to foster a friendly business environment," Sanders said. "Our rules would have reduced pollution without reducing jobs, what we saw as a perfect balance.

"However, the Biden administration has rejected Arkansas' plan, and they used anecdotal evidence and crude and inaccurate analysis to claim Arkansas is letting polluters off the hook. In all reality, nothing can be further from the truth."

Griffin, who said the state has filed a petition of review with the 8th Circuit Court of Appeals in St. Louis, believes the state is on strong legal footing.

"They've moved the goal posts and given the governor no opportunity to revise," he said. "We believe the Biden administration has acted beyond their authority in this particular case by moving the goal posts and basically abrogating the authority of the states."

On Monday, Utah filed suit against the EPA at the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals in Denver, and on Tuesday, Texas sued the EPA at the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals in New Orleans after their plans were rejected.

"The EPA had no good reason to reject Texas's state implementation plan beyond simply wanting to exert more federal control," Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton said Tuesday in a news release. "The state-level plan put forth by [Texas] meets federal air quality standards, and the EPA's hyper-politicized decision to reject our plan must be reversed."

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Politics
Promising to thwart the Biden administration from "abusing their regulatory powers," Republican Arkansas Gov. Sarah Huckabee Sanders said her state is suing the EPA after it rejected a plan to comply with revised ozone regulations.
sarah huckabee sanders, arkansas, lawsuit, epa, ozone, biden administration
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2023-33-16
Thursday, 16 February 2023 07:33 PM
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