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Portela v. Pierce

Citation: 11 ELR 20792
No. No. 79-4002, 650 F.2d 210/(9th Cir., 07/06/1981)

The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals affirms the district court's granting of defendants' motion for summary judgment and holds that the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) was not required to prepare an environmental impact statement (EIS) under the National Environmental Policy Act when it disposed of a small low-income housing project which, upon sale, became a moderate-income project. The court finds that HUD considered all feasible alternatives to selling the project in compliance with the National Housing Act. Furthermore, the court rejects plaintiffs' contention that HUD should have prepared a full EIS HUD guidelines do not require a full EIS for a project of this size. Also, the "special environmental clearance" required by the district court cured the inadequacies of the earlier environmental review. The court concludes that plaintiffs received due process when the district court allowed them to submit written comments prior to granting defendants' motion for summary judgment.

Counsel for Plaintiffs
John O. Calmore
Nat'l Housing Law Project
Suite 300, 2150 Shattuck Ave., Berkeley CA 94704
(415) 548-9400

Loren H. Mitchell
Legal Aid Soc'y of Sacramento Cty.
1235 H St., Sacramento CA 95814
(916) 444-6760

Richard A. Rothschild
Western Center on Law & Poverty
3535 W. 6th St., Los Angeles CA 90020
(213) 487-7211

Counsel for Defendants
Donna L. Martin
Region IX, Department of Housing and Urban Development
Fed. Bldg. & U.S. Cthse., P.O. Box 36003, San Francisco CA 94102
(415) 556-4752

Richard W. Nichols, Ass't U.S. Attorney
3305 Fed. Bldg., 650 Capitol Mall, Sacramento CA 95814
(916) 440-2331

Before SCHROEDER and FARRIS, Circuit Judges, and HARRIS*, District Judge.