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Landwatch Monterey County v. Monterey, County of

ELR Citation: 37 ELR 20052
Nos. No. H028659, (Cal. App. 6th Dist., 02/21/2007)

A California appellate court upheld a lower court decision denying an environmental group's petition challenging a local board's approval of a development project in Monterey County. The group argued that by approving the project with a mitigated negative declaration (MND) in lieu of an environmental impact report, the board violated the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) because the project may contribute to a severe groundwater overdraft in the area. Yet the group failed to cite substantial evidence to support a fair argument of a significant adverse impact. Moreover, the MND is supported by overwhelming, uncontradicted evidence that the project has an ample water supply, and, with mitigation, its potentially adverse impacts to the groundwater supply will be rendered insignificant. Accordingly, the board did not violate the CEQA in approving the project with an MND.