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Miami Will Appeal Controversial Water Standards Ruling

Sep 20, 2016
Originally published on September 20, 2016 8:08 am

City of Miami officials said they would appeal a ruling after a judge tossed out challenges to controversial new state water-quality standards.

Last week, Administrative Law Judge Bram D.E. Canter rejected the challenges by Miami, Martin County, the Seminole Tribe of Florida and Florida Pulp and Paper Association Environmental Affairs, Inc.

Canter sided with the Florida Department of Environmental Protection, which argued that the challengers had missed a legal deadline in the cases.

According to court records, Miami filed a notice of appeal Thursday in the 3rd District Court of Appeal, two days after Canter's ruling.

The water standards, which were developed by the Department of Environmental Protection and approved July 26 by the state Environmental Regulation Commission, involve new and revised limits on chemicals in waterways, with the department saying the plan would allow it to regulate more chemicals while updating standards for others.

The four challenges were filed separately last month in the state Division of Administrative Hearings and then consolidated in one case. But the Department of Environmental Protection argued that the challenges should be dismissed because they were not filed by an Aug. 5 legal deadline that applies in such administrative cases.