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Mumford Cove Ass'n v. Groton, Town of

ELR Citation: 16 ELR 20532
Nos. No. 85-7438, 786 F.2d 530/24 ERC 1116/(2d Cir., 03/20/1986) District court denial of intervention aff'd

The court holds that two Connecticut cities are not entitled to intervene in a Federal Water Pollution Control Act citizen suit brought to enforce a sewage abatement order. The court first holds that the cities may not intervene as of right under Federal Rule of Civil Procedure (FRCP) 24(a)(2) in an action requiring defendant to shift the site of its sewage outfall to a river flowing between the two cities. The cities' interest in opposing the new outfall location does not relate to the subject matter of this suit because the order is final and its terms are not subject to challenge in this enforcement action. The finality of the order is not affected by the required submission of a design report and environmental assessment which require consideration of alternatives to the new sewage outfall location. The order does not condition compliance on the results of the environmental assessment, which was required for construction grant purposes, and does not require further consideration of the outfall location. Moreover, the cities have not demonstrated that the Department of Environmental Protection is not adequately representing their interests. The court also holds that the cities are not entitled to permissive intervention under FRCP 24(b)(2). The district court did not abuse its discretion when it denied permissive intervention on the grounds that it would prejudice the determination of the original parties' rights, all of whom now support construction of the new outfall, especially when it granted the cities amici status.

Counsel for Appellants
Kathleen Eldergill
Beck & Eldergill
447 Center St., Manchester CT 06040
(203) 646-5606

Counsel for Plaintiffs-Appellees
Mark R. Sussman
Murtha, Cullina, Richter & Pinney
City Place, P.O. Box 3197, Hartford CT 06103
(203) 240-6000

Counsel for Plaintiff-Intervenor
Richard F. Webb, Ass't Attorney General
Capitol Annex, 30 Trinity St., Hartford CT 06106
(203) 566-2026

Before Mansfield and Meskill, JJ.