Another twist in the LA River saga


Author:  Damien M. Schiff The LA River has been getting a lot of attention these last several years.  First, it came up in Justice Kennedy's concurring opinion in Rapanos, as an example of a waterbody that doesn't flow all year round but that nevertheless can have a significant environmental impact (because of winter flash ...


An odd post Rapanos case


Author:  Damien M. Schiff In a decision issued late last month, Judge Flanagan of the Eastern District of North Carolina ruled in United States v. Freedman Farms, Inc., that the EPA and the Army Corps of Engineers can establish Clean Water Act jurisdiction over a site's wetlands if the agencies can show that the absence … ...


A shot to the moon that missed

June 14, 2012 | By DAMIEN SCHIFF

Pacific Legal Foundation has long been in the courtroom challenging the EPA and the Corps’ extra-statutory and unconstitutional expansion of federal authority under the Clean Water Act.  Before PLF’s 2006 Supreme Court victory in Rapanos v. United States, the agencies would assert authority over any arguably “wet” property ...


The New York Times and Clean Water Act guidance

June 22, 2012 | By DAMIEN SCHIFF

Earlier this week, the Times editorial page noted that it has been a year since EPA and the Army Corps proposed to issue new “guidance” designed to “interpret” the agencies’ authority under the Clean Water Act following PLF’s 2006 jurisdiction-limiting victory in Rapanos v. United States.  The gist of the oped i ...


Talking Sackett with the cattlemen

July 26, 2012 | By DAMIEN SCHIFF

Tomorrow, I’ll be speaking at the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association annual summer conference in Denver.  I’ll be presenting on Sackett v. EPA, and discussing other prominent and current environmental issues, including the pending draft agency guidance on interpreting Rapanos, the chicken coop controversy in West Virginia, and ...


I spy with my little eye a “water of the United States”

December 11, 2012 | By JENNIFER THOMPSON

Or so says the United States Army Corps of Engineers about the pictured property.  Can you see the water on this property?  We can’t, which is why we are taking the Corps to court in our newest lawsuit, Smith v. U. S. Army Corps of Engineers. Here’s the story: PLF clients Peter and Frankie Smith bought … ...


Should Congress step back and let the courts handle the WOTUS rule?

August 31, 2015 | By TODD GAZIANO

Liberty Blog readers know that the “Waters of the United States” (WOTUS) rule issued earlier this summer is not only a brazen power grab by the U.S. EPA and Army Corps of Engineers that will create additional costs, risks, and confusion for ordinary property owners, but that it is also blatantly illegal. Last week, as … ...


What if the Clean Water Act is unconstitutionally vague?

April 04, 2016 | By JONATHAN WOOD

As regular readers know, PLF argued a case in the Supreme Court of the United States last week, U.S. Army Corps v. Hawkes Co., concerning whether property owners can have their day in court when the federal government declares their land subject to federal control. During the oral argument, Justice Kennedy — long-considered the “swing ...


Ninth Circuit hears appeal from elderly man jailed for building ponds

August 29, 2017 | By TONY FRANCOIS

Today the Ninth Circuit is hearing oral argument in U.S. v. Robertson. Joseph Robertson is presently incarcerated in federal prison in Colorado, serving an 18 month sentence for building two ponds on land owned by the Forest Service in Montana. He is 78 years old. One of the counts for which Mr. Robertson was imprisoned … ...