Briefing complete in the green sturgeon case
This week, we filed our reply brief to our request to the United States Supreme Court to review the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals’ decision in Building Industry Association of the Bay Area v. United States Department of Commerce. We have asked the High Court to review the Ninth Circuit’s ruling that landowners and other affected parties have no right to challenge the federal government’s decision not to exclude areas from critical habitat designation under the Endangered Species Act (friends of PLF will know that questions of judicial review have been an important part of PLF’s recent Supreme Court docket). One of the feds’ arguments against our petition is that critical habitat designation is no big deal. Thanks to the great amicus testimony to the contrary from Alabama and 22 other states, as well as property rights organizations such as The Cato Institute, National Association of Home Builders, and Mountain States Legal Foundation, we were able to argue strongly against that erroneous contention in our reply brief. Next step will be the Court’s consideration of our petition during the so-called Long Conference, scheduled for September 26. Generally speaking, having a petition considered during the Long Conference is not great news (lots of petitions build up over the summer while the Court is in recess, the law clerks for the new Term tend not to like to recommend granting a lot of cases early on in the Term, etc.). But given that September 26 is the Feast of Sts. Cosmas and Damian, perhaps the luck will run the other way!
What to read next
Shed a (crocodile) tear for Luke Skywalker today, as Mark Hamill’s much ballyhooed Autograph Law is set to be undone and reformed by the same California officials who made the mistake to pass it in the first place. AB 228 has arrived at the Governor’s desk, and in all likelihood will be signed into law any day.
Our new flagship publication, Sword&Scales, offers 16 pages of news and information to bring you up close to the vital work of our legal team. Our ardent defense of the right to own and use private property takes center stage in the inaugural issue. It’s at the core of our mission in the nation’s courts.
On Thursday, in Minnesota Voters Alliance v. Mansky, PLF filed this reply brief in support of its cert petition to the Supreme Court of the United States. In this case, we’re representing Minnesota voters in a First Amendment challenge to a ban on political apparel at polling places.
The Daily Journal published my column on California Cannabis Coalition v. City of Upland, recently decided by the California Supreme Court. As the op-ed points out, the ruling undermines Proposition 218’s requirements that all new taxes at the local level need voter approval.