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Conoco, Inc. v. Gardebring

ELR Citation: 11 ELR 20497
Nos. No. 79 C 3110, 503 F. Supp. 49/(N.D. Ill., 09/24/1980)

The court holds that alleged violators of Clean Air Act state implementation plans (SIPs) may obtain preenforcement judicial review of Notices of Violation. The notices were based on the Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA's) determination that plaintiffs' loading terminals were not in compliance with a provision of the Illinois SIP. The court first notes the presumption in favor of judicial review. Furthermore, plaintiffs are raising legal issues regarding the scope of the Administrator's authority in interpreting the SIP and his duty to remedy an inadequate plan, issues which are reviewable because they are not committed to agency discretion by law. In addition, EPA's failure to participate in hearings to clarify the rule and its ability to impose substantial penalties make this case appropriate for judicial review. Finally, the court holds that Notices of Violation are final agency action and thus subject to judicial review.

Counsel for Plaintiffs
Squire, Sanders & Dempsey
1800 Union Commerce Bldg., Cleveland OH 44115
(216) 696-9200

Martin, Craig, Chester & Sonnenschein
115 S. LaSalle St., Chicago IL 60603
(312) 368-9700

Counsel for Defendants
Thomas P. Sullivan, U.S. Attorney
219 S. Dearborn St., Rm. 1500 S., Chicago IL 60604
(312) 353-5300