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Flashcards in Cases Deck (22):

Illinois Central Railroad v. Illinois, 146 U.S. 387 (1892)

US Rebirth.
2 major impacts:
Public trust back on the map in traditional form
Restricts legislative ability to sell some lands

The "lodestar" of American public trust law is this decision.
Illinois legislature had granted ownership of lands underlying Lake Michigan to the Illinois Central RR. They realized how valuable the land was and said the original grant was invalid.
Supreme Court upheld Illinois legislature's action, saying that the land grant was beyond the leg's power. By granting such a large portion of the waterfront, they had relinquished control of navigation, a public trust issue over which it was required to retain authority.
"The state can't abdicate control over lands under the navigable waters of an entire harbor, or of a sea or lake"


Marks v. Whitney - 6 Cal.3d 251 (1971)

Court expands the scope of public trust beyond the traditional purposes of navigation, commerce and fisheries to include environmental and aesthetic purposes. Now includes 'preservation of lands in their natural state.'
Quiet title was filed by Marks, a boundary dispute.
Whitney wanted to block development and keep the beach available to be accessed by himself and the community.
CA supreme court ruled in favor of Whitney saying 'lands may serve as units for scientific study, as open space, and as environments which provide food and habitat for birds and marine life, and which favorably affect the scenery and climate of the area.'


National Audubon Society v. The Superior Court, 33 Cal. 3d 419 (1983)

Issue: does the public trust limit include non-navigable tributaries?
Prior appropriation gives LA rights to water
How can the court take it away?
The court considers public trust but doesn't give distinct guidelines regarding execution of the ruling.
Constitutional requirement of reasonable use now includes use of water for in stream or environmental purposes.
Relied on the Gold Run Ditch opinion to expand application of public trust doctrine to nonnavigable streams. (Gold Run Ditch was the case that killed hydraulic mining in CA, relied on public trust doctrine, was CA's transition from a mining economy to a commercial and ag economy).

Court found that the PTD applied to tributary streams of Mono Lake and prevented LA Dept of Water Power from maintaining a right to divert these waters if the diversion would harm pub. trust values.
p.101 in text book


Rank v. Krug, 90 F. Supp. 773, (S.D. Cal. 1950)

Riparian rights holder downstream of the dam, their main argument was code 5937, their needed to be water in the river.
Initially, ct. ruled that they had no standing to file lawsuit.
In 1950, CA deputy attorney general for Dept. of Fish and Game intervenes in Rank and Krug, asserted 5937 against the dam, seeking 250 cfs for salmon, then just 25 cfs, then withdraws completely.
NRDC v. Patterson revisits Rank v. Krug


Nat. Res. Def. Council v. Patterson, 333 F. Supp. 2d 906 (E.D. Cal. 2004)

Friant Dam.
Revisits Rank v. Krug
Goes from Dist. ct to 9th circuit to district court back to 9th circuit.
Judge rules that historical fisheries have to be restored.
Chinook Salmon were listed as endangered during this lawsuit, the case totally ignores this.
Preemption issues:
1. Central Val. Proj. Improvement Act has requirements about dam operations in the CV
2. Savings clause
3. Savings clause in section 8

Summary adjudication liability: have they broken the law or not? Don't need a remedy yet, they want to find a remedy in a separate case bc they prefer to settle and decide outside of court.
Court says the BoR are liable and have violated the law.
Ruled that CVPIA did not pre-empt section 5937.
Settlement holds until 2026. Requires restoration of flows beginning in 2009, with full amounts by 2013, and the reintroduction of fall and spring salmon in 2012. Goal is a minimum of 500 salmon. Major costs funded by gov.


NRDC v. Kempthorne, 506 F. Supp. 2d 322 (E.D. Cal. 2007)

Expert agency: USFWS
Action agency: Bureau of Reclamation
Court decides that climate change wasn't considered in the report, which caused them to reject it.
Delta Smelt were in danger of degradation. BiOp decided to be insufficient.


U.S. v. Riverside Bayview Homes, Inc. 474 U.S. 121 (1985)

Context of the Clean Water Act.
Corps has jurisdiction to regulate and require permits for discharge of fill material into wetlands adjacent to “waters of the United States”


Rapanos v. United States, 126 S.Ct. 2208 (2006)

Supreme court couldn't come to a majority, at 4-1-4
Roberts (judge) has a separate concurrence
This was conscious law breaking, knew that there was a wetland, tried to destroy it and hide the fact that it was a wetland, ended up in prison paying hundreds of thousands of dollars in criminal and civil fines.
•Corps may assert jurisdiction based on:
–Adjacency to navigable-in-fact waters;
–For nonnavigable tributaries, must establish significant nexus on a case-by-case basis.
•Can cover broadly if similar wetlands


Solid Waste Agency of Northern Cook County v. Army Corps of Engineers, 531 U.S. 159 (2001)

Interpreting CWA.
Supreme court provided the guidance:
Term includes nonnavigable waters that have a "significant nexus" to navigable waters, but did not include wetlands and other waters "isolated" from navigable waters.


California v. FERC, 495 U.S. 490 (1990)

FERC has the primary authority to set instream flows below projects.
But 401 can trump that. Court said that CA's minimum stream flow requirement could be considered a law not preempted by section 27 of the Fed. Power Act.


Calvert Cliffs’, 449 F. 2d 1109 (DC Cir. 1971)

NEPA makes environmental protection a part of the mandate of every fed. agency.
Previously, the Atomic Energy Commission had asserted no power to consider the environment.
NEPA requries fed. agencies to consider the environmental impacts of their actions.
NEPA contains very important 'procedural' provisions, they establish a strict standard of compliance.
Natl. Environmental Policy Act.


Strycker’s Bay, 444 US 223 (1980)

Dept. of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) chose a poor site for low-income housing because they would'be had to wait two years for permitting if they had chosen a different site.
SCOTUS reversed an appellate court's decision: "NEPA, while establishing substantive goals for the nation, imposes upon agencies duties that are essentially procedural, NEPA was designed to insure a fully informed and well considered decision the judges of the Court of Appeals or of this court would have reached had they been members of the decision making unit of the agency."
NEPA does not create actionable requirements beyond the procedural requirements.


Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) v. Hill (1978)

Tennessee Valley Authority was ordered to stop construction and operation of Tellico Dam when a snail darter, a fish inhabiting a small stretch of the Little Tennessee River, was listed as endangered. SCOTUS reached this conclusion despite the fact that $100 mil had already been spent on the project which was 50% complete when ESA became effective, and 80% complete when the fish was listed as endangered.


Babbit v. Sweet Home, 515 US 687 (1995)

Facts: Habitat protection for red-cockaded woodpecker and the northern spotted owl harm some Oregonian economic interests
Issue: Can take, as defined by the ESA to include harm, mean “significant habitat modification or degradation where it actually kills or injures wildlife?”

District Court applied Chevron and upheld the regulation. Court of Appeals agreed, then reversed itself.
•The Court reviewed “whether the Secretary exceeded his authority under the [ESA] by promulgating that regulation.” •Supreme Court holding: Nope. Harm can cover habitat modification that actually kills or injures wildlife. •Reasoning: –Chevron, Purpose of the ESA


Loretto v. Teleprompter Manhattan CATV Corp (1982)

New York Court of Appeals ruled that the installation of cable equipment on a landlord's apartment building was not, SCOTUS reversed saying that the occupation of property was a taking.
Physical taking: temporary or permanent physical taking for public purpose.


Pennsylvania Coal Co.v. Mahon, 260 U.S. 393 (1922)

Regulatory taking: regulation or prohibition amounts to a physical taking.
Penn Coal Co had the rights to mine underneath homeowner's property, but the Kohler Act prohibited them from doing so if the mining caused subsidence, this rendered their rights useless which was deemed a regulatory taking.


Penn Central Transportation Co. v. New York City, 438 US 104 (1978)

No taking where restrictions were imposed on the remodeling of Grand Central Station, a historic landmark

Set the 'Penn Central Test'
1.Extent of interference with the distinct investment-backed expectations
2.Nature of Interference – how big an impact
3.Purpose of Gov’t regulation


Lucas v. South Carolina Coastal Council, 505 U.S. 1003 (1992)

In 1988, South Carolina enacted the Beach Front Management Act.
Where a state seeks to sustain regulation that deprives land of all economically beneficial use, it may resist compensation only if the proscribed use was not allowed to begin with.Such restrictions must “inhere in the title itself” - in the restrictions that background principles place upon land ownership.
Lucas won and SC bought his property for $1.6 million.
Later, the law changed and the property could be developed, so they resold to a developer.
SCOTUS backed down in future similar cases.


Tahoe-Sierra Preservation Council v. Tahoe Regional Planning Agency, 535 U.S. 302 (2002)

The Tahoe Reg. Planning Agency imposed a moratorium on building homes on the parcels of land.
Judge ruled that this did not fall under the takings clause of the 5th and 14th amendments of the US Constitution.
There is a difference between taking property for public use and regulating privately used property.
Look to the parcel as a whole for loss of use.
Takings test:
•Is this a physical invasion? (Loretto v. Teleprompter Manhattan CATV Corp)
–If yes, taking per se, if really took right.
•If not, does this deprive owner of all economically beneficial use? (Lucas)
– Temporal/physical (Tahoe-Sierra Preservation Council v. Tahoe Regional Planning Agency)
–If yes, check background principles
•If not, Does this pass the Penn Central balancing standard?


Tulare Lake Basin Water Storage Dist. v. United States, 49 Fed. Cl. 313 (2001)

•Ps sued for damages; claimed physical taking
•Ds asserted it was regulatory, not physical, and water right was limited by background principles if state law (incl. public trust doctrine).
•Court held Ps had a property interest in the water. (Was it limited under state law?)
•Court held Ds action was a physical taking. •OK to enforce ESA, but you have to pay for it.
•$26 million judgment against U.S., but it didn’t appeal. (Why not?)

Klamath Irr Dist v. US criticized this decision.
Tulare was saying that their right was taken away when teh ESA was enacted.


Klamath Irrigation District v. US, 67 Fed. Cl. 504 (2005)

BoR enforced reduced deliveries to Irr Dist's customers because of BiOp, Coho and Suckers.
•Sharply criticizes Tulare Lake decision:
–“with all due respect, Tulare appears to be wrong on some counts, incomplete in others and, distinguishable”
•Court finds no taking – this is a contract claim issue, not a takings issue


Casitas v. US, 102 Fed. Cl. 443 (2011)

•Trial level decision by same judge as Tulare.
•In light of Tahoe case, decides it is to be decided as regulatory, not physical taking—use Penn Central factors
•Plaintiff identifies the property right for which it seeks compensation as “a portion of Casitas’ water right (specifically, 3,492 acre-feet) granted by the State of California, to divert up to 107,800 acre-feet per year and put 28,500 acre-feet per year to beneficial use,” as set forth in its water license issued by the SWRCB.
Defendant. . . argues that plaintiff’s property right is to the beneficial use of the water only, subject to the additional limitation that such use must not violate California’s public trust doctrine, its reasonable use doctrine, or Section 5937. In defendant’s view, no taking has occurred because (1) the operating restrictions have not affected Casitas’s beneficial use of the water (Casitas has thus far met all of its customers’ needs and, according to defendant, is projected to do so in the future), and (2) Casitas does not, in any event, have a right under California law to use water in a manner that is harmful to the fish.
Holding: diversion of water down the fish ladder is not a taking.