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Concerned Citizens for the 442nd T.A.W. v. Bodycombe

Citation: 12 ELR 20684
No. No. 81-0997-CV-W-3, 538 F. Supp. 184/(W.D. Mo., 04/08/1982)

The court holds that the Air Force complied with the National Environmental Policy Act in preparing an environmental assessment (EA) and in determining not to prepare an environmental impact statement (EIS) for the deactivation of a tactical air wing. At the outset, it rejects plaintiffs' contention that the decision to deactivate the wing and convert it to a fighter group was made prior to the filing of the EA.Although a plan for the conversion was announced in January 1981, a final decision to convert was not made until February 1982, after the EA was filed. In upholding the Air Force's decision not to prepare an EIS, the court finds that plaintiffs failed to show that the project could substantially affect the quality of the human environment. The ammunition to be carried by the fighter planes and their safety record were considered in the EA and were found not to have a substantial impact. Moreover, the number of personnel to be affected by the conversion is irrelevant to a determination of whether an EIS should have been prepared. Economic and social effects alone are not sufficient to require the preparation of an EIS.

Counsel for Plaintiffs
Gerald H. Rosen
224 Commerce Bank Bldg., 8901 State Line, Kansas City MO 64114
(816) 444-1035

Counsel for Defendants
Mark J. Zimmermann, Ass't U.S. Attorney
549 U.S. Cthse., 811 Grant Ave., Kansas City MO 64106
(816) 374-3122

Byron D. Baur
Office of the General Counsel
Department of the Air Force, The Pentagon, Washington DC 20330 SAF/GC
(202) 695-4691