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Perkins v. Bergland

Citation: 8 ELR 20833
No. No. 78-131-Pct.-WPC, 455 F. Supp. 937/(D. Ariz., 07/31/1978)

Granting defendants' motions for summary judgment, the court concludes that the Secretary of Agriculture's decision to reduce authorized utilization of national forest lands under grazing permits was an action committed to agency discretion by law and thus not judicially reviewable. Plaintiffs, whose permits in the Prescott National Forest were substantially reduced as to the number of cattle allowed to graze, argued that regulations limiting the Secretary's discretion to revoke or suspend a permit constituted an adequate standard for judicial review. Pointing out that such regulations are not relevant because the permits were not suspended, the court notes that the Secretary's power to permit grazing is statutory and that such a reduction is provided for both in the regulations and the grazing permit. Exercise of discretion to reduce allowed use is not susceptible to judicial review.

Counsel for Plaintiffs
William P. Mahoney
Sullivan, Mahoney and Tang
403 Luhrs Bldg., Phoenix AZ 85003
(602) 254-8861

Mitchell D. Platt
Platt & Hall, P.C.
P.O. Box 398, St. Johns AZ 85936
(602) 337-4932

Counsel for Defendants
Michael A. Johns, Ass't U.S. Attorney
Room 5000, Federal Bldg., 230 N. First Ave., Phoenix AZ 85025
(602) 261-3011