LOCAL NEWS

US Supreme Court Declines Involvement In State Egg Law Cases

Jan 8, 2019, 4:50 PM | Updated: 5:14 pm
(Photo by VCG/VCG via Getty Images)...
(Photo by VCG/VCG via Getty Images)
(Photo by VCG/VCG via Getty Images)

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) — The U.S. Supreme Court has declined to get involved in a legal dispute in which 15 states are seeking to strike down laws in California and Massachusetts that require larger living areas for some farm animals.

The attorney general’s office in Missouri, which spearheaded one of the lawsuits, vowed Tuesday to continue fighting for local farmers and consumers and said it was considering the next step.

President Donald Trump’s Department of Justice had urged the Supreme Court not to accept original jurisdiction over the states’ lawsuits. It said the dispute over interstate commerce was best suited for a district court.

The Supreme Court didn’t cite a reason for rejecting the lawsuits in a brief order Monday, although it noted Justice Clarence Thomas would have granted the motions.

The high court on Monday also declined to hear an appeal of California’s 2004 law banning a poultry product known as foie gras, a liver delicacy made by force-feeding ducks and geese. The issue has been simmering in courts since shortly after lawmakers passed the ban, which also prohibits liver produced out of state from entering California.

The multi-state egg lawsuit against California was led by former Missouri Attorney General Josh Hawley, a Republican who won election as a U.S. senator in November. He was replaced as attorney general last week by former state treasurer Eric Schmitt, a fellow Republican who pledged Tuesday to continue the fight to protect farmers and consumers from “burdensome regulations.”

California voters approved a ballot initiative in 2008 requiring that caged hens spend most of their day in spaces large enough to lie down, stand up, turn around and extend their limbs. The measure gave farmers until 2015 to comply. After California egg farmers raised concerns that they would be put at a competitive disadvantage, state legislators in 2010 expanded the law to bar the sale of eggs from any hens that were not raised in compliance with California standards requiring at least 116 square inches of floor space per chicken.

The lawsuit claimed the California law cost consumers nationwide up to $350 million annually because of higher egg prices since the requirements took effect in 2015.

California voters in November approved an even more aggressive law. It will require all eggs sold in the state to come from cage-free hens by 2022. It also bans the sale of pork and veal from animals that are not raised according to new minimum living space requirements.

The other multi-state lawsuit, led by Indiana, challenged a law approved by Massachusetts voters in 2016 that requires minimum living spaces for pigs and calves and also mandates that all eggs come from cage-free hens by 2022.

Both lawsuits alleged violations of the commerce clause of the U.S. Constitution for effectively imposing one state’s regulatory standards on people in other states.

The states involved in both lawsuits included Alabama, Arkansas, Indiana, Louisiana, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, Oklahoma, Texas, Utah and Wisconsin. Iowa and Nevada were plaintiffs only in the lawsuit against California. South Carolina and West Virginia were plaintiffs only in the lawsuit against Massachusetts.

(Copyright 2019 by The Associated Press. All rights reserved.)

KSL 5 TV Live

Top Stories

Local News

...
Matt Gephardt

Get Gephardt: How do you know if your donation really gets to those who need it?

Fundraising runs rampant on social media, but how do you know if your donation really gets to those who need it?
10 hours ago
(UDOT)...
Josh Ellis

Elk herd returns to SLC’s Foothill Drive; one hit in crash overnight

UDOT and the Utah DWR are urging drivers to be on alert as a herd of elk returned to roads near the mouth of Parleys Canyon Friday morning.
10 hours ago
...
Shelby Lofton

Steal. Sell. Repeat. Wave of construction thefts leaves Utah buyers stuck paying the price

They thought it was a steal. Turns out, they got scammed. The law caught up to a man who stole construction equipment and sold it to unwitting Utahns, but his victims say they’re the ones paying for his crimes.
1 day ago
Unified Police Department squad vehicle. (KSL TV)...
Eliza Pace

Woman in custody after crashing into 3 civilian cars and 3 police cars in Midvale chase

A police pursuit resulted in damages to three Unified Police Department cars and three civilian cars Thursday night.
1 day ago
(Andrew Adams/KSL TV)...
Eliza Pace

Two arrested in Glendale shooting

Two men were arrested Thursday for the fatal shooting of a 35-year-old man in the Glendale neighborhood
1 day ago
A search is underway for Austin Madsen, 32, of Mapleton, Utah. (Mapleton Police Department)...
Shara Park

Search underway in Garfield County for missing father suffering mental health crisis

A desperate search is underway right now in Garfield County for a 32-year-old father from Mapleton, who was last heard from almost a week ago.
1 day ago

Sponsored Articles

vintage photo of lighting showroom featuring chandeliers, lamps, wall lights and mirrors...
Lighting Design

History of Lighting Design | Over 25 Years of Providing Utah With the Latest Trends and Styles

Read about the history of Lighting Design, a family-owned and operated business that paved the way for the lighting industry in Utah.
Fiber Optical cables connected to an optic ports and Network cables connected to ethernet ports...
Brian Huston, CE and Anthony Perkins, BICSI

Why Every Business Needs a Structured Cabling System

A structured cabling system benefits businesses by giving you faster processing speeds and making your network more efficient and reliable.
notebook with password notes highlighted...
PC Laptops

How to Create Strong Passwords You Can Actually Remember

Learn how you can create strong passwords that are actually easy to remember! In a short time you can create new ones in seconds.
house with for rent sign posted...
Chase Harrington, president and COO of Entrata

Top 5 Reasons You May Want to Consider Apartment Life Over Owning a Home

There are many benefits of renting that can be overshadowed by the allure of buying a home. Here are five reasons why renting might be right for you.
Festive kitchen in Christmas decorations. Christmas dining room....
Lighting Design

6 Holiday Decor Trends to Try in 2022

We've rounded out the top 6 holiday decor trends for 2022 so you can be ahead of the game before you start shopping. 
Happy diverse college or university students are having fun on their graduation day...
BYU MBA at the Marriott School of Business

How to Choose What MBA Program is Right for You: Take this Quiz Before You Apply!

Wondering what MBA program is right for you? Take this quiz before you apply to see if it will help you meet your goals.
US Supreme Court Declines Involvement In State Egg Law Cases