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San Francisco, City & County of v. United States

Citation: 10 ELR 20346
No. No. 78-1701, 615 F.2d 498/14 ERC 1347/(9th Cir., 03/14/1980) Aff'd

The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals affirms the lower court's dismissal, 8 ELR 20386, of a suit by a disappointed bidder seeking to void the lease of a federally owned shipyard because of alleged violations of the National Environmental Policy Act and the Coastal Zone Management Act. Appellant challenged the Navy's determination that the environmental effects associated with the leasing to a private ship repair company would not be significant and that preparation of an environmental impact statement (EIS) was thus not required. It also asserted that the Navy did not properly consider the alternative of using the facility as a deep water port. The court finds that the record reasonably supports the Navy's negative determination because the lease was only a new phase in the continuous operation of the shipyard and thus would not increase the ongoing environmental effects of the facility significantly. In addition, the Navy had promised to coordinate its action with the city to mitigate the adverse impacts. The court further agrees that the city's suggestion for use of the facility as a deep water port came too late to render unreasonable the failure to consider that alternative within an EIS. Moreover, the lease does not foreclose the possibility of such use. The Ninth Circuit affirms the lower court's judgment that the lease could not have been conformed to the coastal zone management plan for San Francisco Bay because California's plan was not approved until long after the lease became effective. The court also rejects appellant's claims regarding alleged violations of Navy procurement regulations and the Federal Tort Claims Act.

Counsel for Appellant
Philip S. Ward, Deputy City Attorney; George P. Agnost
City Hall, San Francisco CA 94102
(415) 558-5060

Counsel for Appellees
David P. Bancroft, Ass't U.S. Attorney
450 Golden Gate Ave., San Francisco CA 94102
(415) 556-1126

Before BROWNING and KENNEDY, Circuit Judges, and DUMBAULD,* District Judge.