It is hard to believe we have reached the end of September. It has been a busy couple of weeks in the agricultural law realm.
*Ag policy lesson from Dr. Outlaw. Dr. Joe Outlaw offered an important ag policy lesson earlier this week on the Southern Ag Today website talking about unintended consequences. He discussed a proposed rule from the Securities and Exchange Commission on climate-related disclosures and how the requirement could have major impacts on agriculture. [Read article here.]
*EPA sued over alleged FOIA violations. The Center for Food Safety has files suit against the Environmental Protection Agency claiming that the EPA violated the Freedom of Information Act by failing to timely provide information requested by the Center for Food Safety related to the agency’s report on dicamba. The suit also alleges that the EPA withheld public records from the report. [Read article here.]
*Ag groups allowed to intervene in grey wolf delisting lawsuit. The US Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit recently granted a motion to allow several ag groups to intervene in a lawsuit to defend the Trump administration’s delisting of the grey wolf from the Endangered Species Act. In February, a federal district court ruled that the US Fish and Wildlife Service should not have removed ESA protections for the grey wolf. In that ligation, the district court denied the ag groups motion to intervene. The Ninth Circuit found this denial to be an abuse of discretion. The agricultural groups now participating as intervenors in the litigation are the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association, Public Lands Council, American Sheep Industry Association, and the American Farm Bureau Federation. They will participate in the appeal of the lower court’s decision that the grey wolf should not have been removed. [Read article here.]
*Supreme Court asked to consider animal identification advisory committees. The New Civil Liberties Alliance filed a Petition for Certiorari with the US Supreme Court asking the high court to take R-Calf USA v. USDA, a lawsuit claiming APHIS failed to comply with statutory requirements in the Federal Advisory Committee Act in establishing two advisory committees related to animal identification. The US Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit sided with APHIS, which the New Civil Liberties Union claims was in conflict with a decision from the 11th Circuit. [Read Petition here and article here.]
*Proposition 12 update. Beth Rumley from the National Agricultural Law Center recently published an update on the current status of Proposition 12. This is particularly timely as the US Supreme Court will hear lawsuit challenging the constitutionality of Prop 12 in October. [Read article here.]
*Beware of co-ownership in an estate plan. Curt Ferguson recently wrote an article titled “Don’t condemn your kids to co-owning real estate” in which he outlines in some of the perils of leaving land to heirs as co-owners as part of an estate plan. He provides some important considerations to think on as you work on your own plan. [Read article here.]
*American Agricultural Law Association Conference in New Orleans. For all the law students and lawyers in the crowd, don’t forget about the AALA Conference November 10-12, in New Orleans. Joining the AALA was hands down the best thing I’ve done for my career. The conference is full of great information, tons of networking opportunities, and you can complete your CLE requirements for the year in one place. Law students–we’ve got two competitions for you. A writing competition that you can enter whether you can attend the conference or not and a Quiz Bowl that is held the conference. Click here for more information.
To see a complete list of my upcoming presentations, click here.
Also, keep in mind that we do offer a couple of on demand, online course options. If you’re interested in our Owning Your Piece of Texas: Key Laws Texas Landowners Need to Know course, we have an 8.5 hour online version covering topics ranging from water law to fence law, landowner liability to property taxes. Click here for more information. If you’re interested in our Ranchers Leasing Workshop class, we have a 2.5 hour online course option focused on grazing and hunting leases. Click here for more information.