Maryland Governor Martin O’Malley in a letter this week to University of Maryland law school Dean Phoebe Haddon complained about the “ongoing injustice” of the environmental law clinic pursuing “costly litigation of questionable merit” against Alan and Kristin Hudson of Berlin, Maryland who raise chickens for Perdue Farms on their Worcester County farm.

The University of Maryland Environmental Law Clinic is representing the Waterkeeper Alliance, a New York-based environmental group with 18 chapters in Maryland.

“It is my strong belief that this case, at this juncture, is a misuse of state resources. This case, at this juncture, perpetrates an injustice,” O’Malley wrote in the November 14 letter.  “This is a matter of fundamental fairness and the ongoing and significant injustice and economic harm being done to a decent, hard-working Maryland family by the continued pursuit of this very questionable suit.”

O’Malley joins a long list of agricultural leaders across the state of Maryland who have voiced their concern over the Waterkeepers’ litigation against the Hudsons, saying the litigation represents an unfair attack on a family farm and sets a dangerous precedent for environmental litigation.  Those opposed to the lawsuit maintain that the Waterkeeper Alliance is using litigation as a tactic to put financial and legal pressure on the Hudsons in order to drive them out of business before facts can be presented in the court of law.

The National Chicken Council (NCC) has been a strong supporter of SaveFarmFamilies.org, assisting the Hudsons in raising funds for their legal defense in their ongoing legal battle with the Waterkeeper Alliance.

NCC’s processor member companies that account for over 95 percent of U.S. chicken production have stood solidly together with other groups and individuals to work against the WaterKeepers’ litigation against the Hudsons.

 

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