Stalling runoff order is short sighted

The Ohio Soil and Water Conservation Commission is supposed to look out for all Ohioans by making sure Ohio’s precious natural resources aren’t squandered. Those resources include, prominently, Lake Erie, a state jewel.

Instead, by hastily shelving Gov. John Kasich’s recent executive order aimed at reducing the farm runoff feeding the lake’s destructive toxic algal blooms, the commission has shown itself beholden to farm interests at the expense of its own mandate and the state’s future.

The commission, which is not scheduled to meet again until Nov. 1, must reverse its short-sighted July 19 stall, supposedly done to study Kasich’s July 11 executive order, and it must do so soon, if necessary, via an emergency meeting.

Kasich’s order also gives the Agriculture Department the power to implement any crackdown, assuring a careful review by an agency tasked generally with keeping Ohio’s multibillion-dollar agricultural sector thriving and happy.

The commission should move forward, too. It needs to convene soon to confirm Kasich’s distressed watersheds designation.

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