Gov. Jay Inslee and New York Governor Andrew Cuomo released a joint statement today:
“We strongly oppose the Trump administration's unlawful attempt to limit the authority of states to protect our water resources under Section 401 of the Clean Water Act. This administration has repeatedly abdicated their federal responsibility to protect our families and our environment, and now they are going even further by attempting to take this authority away from the states.
“When Congress enacted the Clean Water Act almost 50 years ago, it made clear that states—and not the federal government—have the knowledge and expertise to uphold our own water quality standards. While the EPA presents this proposal under the guise of ‘clarifying’ and ‘updating’ regulations, it is in fact a massive power grab that seeks to subordinate states and strip us of our authority to preserve clean water and protect public health. This is yet another attempt by the Trump administration to fabricate a problem that does not exist in order to put corporate interests above the health and safety of hard-working Americans.
“Let’s be clear: New York and Washington state will continue to exercise our full authority under the Clean Water Act and ensure the right of our people to clean water. Despite what the president and his administration suggest, states have executed our authority under Section 401 fairly and effectively for decades. This is just one more example of the Trump administration's unprecedented assault on the environment, and we will not stand for it. We will fight to protect the people who live in our states and defend our clear and unambiguous authority under the law.”