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Buccaneer Point Estates, Inc. v. United States

Citation: 12 ELR 20732
No. No. 78-194-CIV-WMH, 17 ERC 1973/(S.D. Fla., 02/25/1982)

The district court rules that the Corps of Engineers, after disclaiming jurisdiction, may subsequently require plaintiffs to obtain a Federal Water Pollution Control Act (FWPCA) § 404 permit prior to further placement of fill material on mangrove wetlands. In 1975 the Corps advised plaintiffs that their fill activity did not require a permit, but later informed them that its § 404 jurisdiction had been held to include dredge and fill projects. The court rejects plaintiffs' contentions that the Corps is estopped or otherwise barred from requiring them to obtain a § 404 permit by its earlier erroneous interpretation of the jurisdiction conferred by the FWPCA. In addition, the court notes that estoppel against the federal government is inapplicable in the instant action. The court also rejects plaintiffs' contention that defendant's actions amounted to a taking, ruling that there has been no taking since there has been as yet no permit denial.

Counsel for Plaintiffs
Arthur M. Simon
Goodwin, Ryskamp, Welcher, Carrier & Donoff
401 City Nat'l Bank Bldg., 25 W. Flagler St., Miami FL 33130
(305) 379-8353

Counsel for Defendant
Stanley Marcus, U.S. Attorney
155 S. Miami Ave., Miami FL 33130
(305) 35-4471