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Student Pub. Interest Research Group of N.J. v. Anchor Thread Co.

Citation: 19 ELR 20670
No. No. 84-320 (GEB), 28 ERC 1302/(D.N.J., 09/09/1988) Interest rate calculated, supplemental fee application denied

The court holds that plaintiffs that prevailed in a Federal Water Pollution Control Act (FWPCA) citizen suit are entitled to receive interest on their attorneys fees award at the rate specified in the federal post-judgment interest statute, and supplemental fees are inappropriate. The court rejects plaintiffs' formula for calculating the interest rate based on prime rates and interest rates on certificates of deposit during the period of litigation. Enhancement multipliers are within the court's discretion. There is no evidence of bad faith by defendant, and plaintiffs' fee submissions have become excessive. Although the federal post-judgment interest statute, 28 U.S.C. § 1961, does not control this FWPCA case, there is no reason to apply an interest rate greater than specified by that statute. The court approves a rate of 6.18 percent, the rate in effect when the consent decree was entered in 1986. The court also holds that supplemental fees are inappropriate under FWPCA § 505(d). The inquiry into fees has dwarfed the case in chief, and much of the fees and expenses requested in the supplemental application could have been presented with the original fee application.

[Other decisions in this litigation are published at 19 ELR 20665 and 20671.]

Counsel are listed at 19 ELR 20665.