SANDAG Litigation Update
November 19, 2013
From the office of BCF Public Affairs:
Last Fall, your organization joined more than 30 others throughout the state in signing onto an amicus brief in the lawsuit against the San Diego Association of Governments (SANDAG) challenging their adoption of the state’s first Sustainable Communities Strategy (SCS) under SB 375. You’ll recall that several environmental groups and the Attorney General sued SANDAG. Though they all admitted SANDAG fully complied with SB 375, they sued nonetheless claiming the SCS and overall Regional Transportation Plan (RTP) violated CEQA. The coalition amicus was filed in the trial court, which ultimately ruled in favor of the challengers, invalidating SANDAG’s plan on multiple fronts.
Briefing is now under way at the court of appeal, and we intend to file our amicus brief there. Significant statewide precedents hang in balance, including:
We will be re-packaging the brief you’ve already signed onto for filing in the Court of Appeal case. We don’t anticipate major revisions, but we’ll confirm that with you after our lawyers dig back in and we recirculate the brief. We’re hopeful your organization will continue to support the effort
As for timing, the brief probably needs to be finalized and filed in the first week of December, so if you could keep an eye out for the follow-up email update and brief, and turn it around ASAP, we’d sure appreciate it!
If anyone has any questions, please let us know.
We very much appreciate your ongoing interest in and support of this important matter.
Update: CCTA’s Legal Challenges to CARB’s Regulations
November 1, 2013
On October 30, CCTA received an order from the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeal denying our motion for reconsideration of the ‘en banc’ (full court) petition to review the EPA’s determination and approval of the California State Implementation Plan or SIP. This was a longshot based on the timing issues, as the SIP was ‘stealthily’ filed and approved during our litigation against CARB. Related to this is our petition directly to EPA for reconsideration of the approval of the SIP by EPA – again all ‘surreptitiously’ done during our direct litigation. This challenge is more an exercise of thoroughness than legal utility.
So our main legal action or FAAAA argument claim, stating that state law (CARB regulations) violates federal law is also on Appeal to the Ninth Circuit Court. Our appeal of Judge England’s order saying that he no longer had authority over the case is still pending and will be appealed ultimately to the U.S. Supreme Court.
Truckers Will Continue Legal Battle against CARB and U.S. EPA
UPLAND, Calif., Jan. 22, 2013 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The California Construction Trucking Association (CCTA) has filed a Notice of Appeal to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit in its nearly two-year-long legal case against the California Air Resources Board's (CARB) heavy-duty, on-road truck and bus regulation (CDTOA v. CARB, Case No. 2:11-CV-00384-MCE-GGH).
Why We Should Continue to Fight
Based on the December 19th decision from the U.S. Circuit Court in our case “CDTOA(CCTA) v. CARB” (22 months after we filed our original suit), we now have to include the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) as a defendant if we choose to appeal our case. EPA approved the California Air Resources Board (CARB) state implementation plan (SIP) during our suit and it apparently changes the dynamics of the case – that’s at least what the judge said.
We’ve discussed various legal strategies with our attorneys and, on January 10, 2013, told them to proceed and file the Notice of Appeal with the 9th Circuit Court in our legal action against the CARB heavy-duty on-road truck and bus regulation. The Notice of Appeal was officially filed on January 16.
From CTN Magazine Updates
January 1, 2013 - Executive Director Article
Judge’s Decision Ignores Simple Supremacy Clause Question
I was on the cusp of finishing my January managers’ report just before the Christmas weekend and something happened, so instead of cancelling most of my report, I decided to share it with you. I was going to begin it like this:
“After 23-months we still have no decision in our case against CARB. September 6th was the last hearing date (this one caused by EPA’s politically-timed acceptance of CARB’s state implantation plan (SIP)). At that hearing, Judge England said he would have a decision out ‘shortly.’ The word ‘shortly’ surely doesn’t mean the same to all of us. Impatient with the delay, we sent an appeal letter to the court on November 15 asking for a decision.”
December 1, 2012 - Executive Director Article
Going on 22-months and still no decision
After the final hearing in early September, U.S. District Judge Morrison C. England Jr., said that he would, “have a decision
November 1, 2012 - Executive Director Article
Going on 21-months and still no decision
After the final hearing in early September, Judge England said that he would, “have a decision shortly”. Later that day, Joe R. bet me that this was a “political” decision and we would not have it prior to the November 6 election – strangely I took the bet. It appears to now be a “suckers bet”, as the decision delay is proving very problematic and political to the judge who claims to be a Republican deciding on an extreme liberal Democratic environmental issue. Hmmm…….bye, bye 20-bucks!
I wonder when our Constitution became so subverted in politics that even the local federal court system finds work-arounds and delays. The public health science community (and UC school system) has undermined the scientific integrity in this field of science, why not the political system too.
You can all look for us and this case before the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals which incidentally is over-turned 75% of the time – thank God! We’ll be there next if we ever get a decision – probably November 7 Haa!
October 2012 - Executive Director Article
Going on 20-months and still no decision.
CalChamber’s Final Tally on Job Killer Bills:
Governor Vetoes Two; Signs Two into Law
Gov. Brown concluded his work on legislation over the last weekend in September, vetoing two more CalChamber member-opposed "job killer" bills in addition to signing two job killer bills into law. A total of four job killers ultimately made it to the Governor’s desk from the 32 that were identified for 2012.
September 2012 - Executive Director Article
On Thursday, September 6, 2012, we finally had our hopefully “last” hearing in this phase of our lawsuit against CARB in front of U.S. District Court Judge Morrison England, Jr. in Sacramento. The hearing was delayed several times due to the judge’s repeated requests for supplemental briefing from the parties.
At the hearing, the defendants fielded three attorneys: a Deputy Attorney General from the state Department of Justice, the CARB General Counsel, and a high-profile lawyer from the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC). Interestingly, the attorney from the NRDC, Melissa Lin Perrella, spoke 90% of time; counsel from the AG’s office 10% and the lawyer from CARB said nothing. Clearly, the NRDC is running this show for the opposition.
PLF Case Update - September 2012
Our petition for hearing on CARB’s waiver application for non-road diesel engines was approved in part and denied in part. EPA agreed to hold a hearing on September 20, 2012, but it will be in Washington, D.C., not in Sacramento, as we had requested.
August 2012 - Executive Director Article
The latest developments in our lawsuit against the CARB On-Road Truck and Bus Rule is more evidence that we are truly fighting a multi-headed monster. We have taken on CARB and the State of California, the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) quickly intervened in the case against us, and now the court seems to be on the verge of inviting the U.S. EPA to join in the case.
PLF Case Updates - August 2012
In late July, EPA held a hearing in Sacramento regarding the proposed particulate matter standard, at which members of CCTA and others presented testimony regarding the devastating effects those regulations could have on the trucking industry in California. A substantial number of eminent scientists testified at the hearings, stating that the regulations were unnecessary and were based on faulty science.
Ted Hadzi-Antich of Pacific Legal Foundation reports that the D.C. Circuit Appeals Court has rejected numerous challenges to EPA’s finding that greenhouse gases harm human health and welfare. Pacific Legal Foundation and others plan to appeal the decision.
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