Jump to Navigation
Jump to Content

McCarthy v. Thomas

ELR Citation: 18 ELR 21025
Nos. No. CIV 85-344 TUC WDB, (D. Ariz., 04/19/1988) On EPA's motion for deadline extension

The court holds that the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has not sufficiently demonstrated that it was impossible for it to meet a court-imposed deadline of March 31, 1988, for promulgating a federal implementation plan (FIP) under the Clean Air Act for Maricopa County, Arizona. The court previously held, 17 ELR 21214, that when EPA rejects a state implementation plan as inadequate, Clean Air Act §110(c) requires it to prepare a federal plan, even if the state is also working on a plan, and ordered EPA to promulgate FIPs for Pima and Maricopa Counties by March 31, 1988. On March 14, 1988, EPA asked the court for an extension to promulgate the FIP for Maricopa County. The court holds that EPA has not demonstrated that it was impossible to meet the March 31 deadline. The affidavit of an EPA regional Air Management Division director is insufficient to meet EPA's burden, and there is no evidence in the record supporting EPA's position. The court orders the complete FIP to be promulgated by August 10, 1988, and notes that future noncompliance may cause the agency to be held in civil contempt.

Counsel for Plaintiff
David S. Baron
Arizona Center for Law in the Public Interest
Suite 106, 3208 E. Fort Lavell Rd., Tucson AZ 85716
(602) 327-9547

Counsel for Defendants
David W. Zugschwerdt
Land & Natural Resources Division
Department of Justice, Washington DC 20530
(202) 633-2686