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News & Analysis In the Courts Volume 50, Issue 7

Champions Retreat Golf Founders, LLC v. Commissioner of IRS

50 ELR 20117
18-14817 (11th Cir., May 2020)
The Eleventh Circuit vacated and remanded the U.S. Tax Court's decision disallowing a charitable deduction for a conservation easement over property that included a private golf course and undeveloped land.

Northern Plains Resource Council v. U.S. Army Corps of Engineers

50 ELR 20115
CV 19-44-GF-BMM (D. Mont., May 2020)
A district court amended a previous order that vacated a nationwide permit reissued by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and enjoined the Corps from authorizing any dredge or fill activities under the permit pending completion of the ESA §7 consultation process.

California Natural Resources Agency v. Ross

50 ELR 20113
1:20-CV-00426-DAD-EPG and 1:20-CV-00431-DAD-EPG (E.D. Cal., May 2020)
A district court preliminarily enjoined the Bureau of Reclamation from expanding water export operations in California's Central Valley based on biological opinions adopted by NMFS and FWS in 2019.

Clover Coffie v. Florida Crystals Corp.

50 ELR 20116
19-80730-CIV-SMITH (S.D. Fla., May 2020)
A district court dismissed for lack of standing a challenge to sugarcane producers' annual burning of sugarcane fields.

WildEarth Guardians v. U.S. Forest Service

50 ELR 20114
1:19-cv-00203-CWD (D. Idaho, May 2020)
A magistrate judge granted in part and denied in part the Forest Service's and FWS' motion to dismiss a lawsuit concerning a Forest Service policy that allows states to decide whether bait can be used to hunt black bears in national forests.

Center for Biological Diversity v. Esper

50 ELR 20111
18-16836 (9th Cir., May 2020)
The Ninth Circuit affirmed summary judgment for DOD in a challenge to construction and operation of a new aircraft base in Okinawa, Japan, and its potential adverse effects on the endangered Okinawa dugong.

Idaho Conservation League v. U.S. Forest Service

50 ELR 20110
1:18-CV-504-BLW (D. Idaho, May 2020)
A district court vacated an EA and FONSI issued by the Forest Service approving a mining company to explore for gold on public lands near the Idaho-Montana border.

PPG Industries Inc. v. United States

50 ELR 20112
19-1165 (3d C.r, May 2020)
The Third Circuit affirmed a district court ruling that the U.S. government was not liable to a coatings company for cleanup costs at a chromite ore processing plant with which it was involved during World War I and World War II.

WildEarth Guardians v. U.S. Bureau of Land Management

50 ELR 20106
CV-18-73-GF-BMM (D. Mont., May 2020)
A district court vacated 287 oil and gas leases that BLM issued on 145,000 acres of federal land in Montana.

Oregon Natural Desert Ass'n v. United States Forest Service

50 ELR 20107
18-35514 (9th Cir., May 2020)
The Ninth Circuit affirmed summary judgment for the Forest Service in a challenge to its issuance of grazing authorizations on allotments in the Malheur National Forest.