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Entergy Arkansas, Inc. v. Nebraska

Citation: 29 ELR 21277
No. No. 4:98CV3411, 46 F. Supp. 2d 977/48 ERC 1653/(D. Neb., 04/16/1999) preliminary injunction

The court grants the Central Interstate Low-Level Radioactive Waste Commission's motion for a preliminary injunction against a state that allegedly violated an interstate compact. The injunction would prohibit the state from requiring the commission to pay for the state's defense costs in the commission's suit against the state. The commission argued that the state exercised bad faith in disapproving an application to construct a low-level radioactive waste disposal site. In granting the injunction, the court first holds that the commission would suffer irreparable harm if the court did not grant the injunction. Without the injunction, the commission will lose over $ 7.5 million in fees and costs, and difficult preclusion issues would arise. Conversely, the court holds that the state will suffer no harm from the injunction. Rather, the license will remain denied and the parties will pay their own fees. The court then holds that the commission is likely to prevail on the merits. There has been a substantial showing of the state's bad faith, and the commission's suit is not barred by the Eleventh Amendment, the exhaustion and abstention doctrines, or the anti-injunction statute. Last, the court holds that it is in the public interest to grant the injunction because Congress and all of the other states party to the compact expected the state to act in good faith when it consented to the compact.

Counsel for Plaintiffs
John P. Heil
Baird & Holm Law Firm
1500 Woodmen Tower, Omaha NE 68102
(402) 344-0500

Counsel for Defendants
Linda L. Willard
Attorney General's Office
2115 State Capitol
P.O. Box 98920, Lincoln NE 68509
(402) 471-2682