Beef Buzz News
Government Cracks Down on Sue and Settle Tactics Employed by Environmental Activist GroupsTue, 11 Jun 2019 10:28:31 CDT
Sue and settle is a tactic that environmental groups have used to coerce government agencies to get what they want when it comes to various regulations. Ethan Lane, executive director of the Public Lands Council for the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association said in a recent interview with Radio Oklahoma Ag Network Farm Director Ron Hays that he believes we may be nearing the end of the sue and settle era - thanks to the efforts of the current administration.
“It’s not dead, but it may be on life support,” Lane said. “This administration has been really proactive on the sue and settle issue.”
According to Lane, many of the groups that choose to employ this tactic are often enabled to do so through government funds granted under the Equal Acts of Justice Act (EAJA). Some have even reported that 30 to 40 percent of their annual budget comes from government awards. Recognizing the conflict of interest there, the Administration and eventually even Congress came together to require federal agencies to establish public databases itemizing their EAJA payouts. Furthermore, the agencies are now required to hold comment periods as well to allow the public an opportunity to weigh in on whether or not the settlements awarded in these cases are sensible.
“Now, whether or not the government decides to listen to those comments is up to them - but we’re starting to get a little sunshine on these decisions, because at the end of the day that’s what’s been missing from this equation,” he said. “So, we give a lot of credit to the Administration for their work on this and we hope they keep the pressure on because the result is going to be a better functioning system for everybody.”
Listen to Hays’ complete conversation with Lane as the discuss the Administration’s actions to curb sue and settle activity by environmental groups, on today’s Beef Buzz.
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