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California Bldg. Indus. Ass'n v. San Joaquin Valley Air Pollution Control Dist.

ELR Citation: 39 ELR 20223
Nos. No. F055448, (Cal. App. 5th Dist., 10/06/2009)

A California appellate court affirmed a lower court decision upholding two rules adopted by a local air pollution control district designed to encourage developers to reduce indirect pollution, such as mobile source emissions, caused by new development projects. Under the rules, commonly referred to as indirect source review (ISR), the developer can reduce emissions by incorporating pollution-reducing features in the project, by paying a fee to fund off-site projects that will reduce emissions, or by a combination of the two. The air district had the power to adopt regulations to mitigate the effects of indirect source pollution, including the power to impose fees on persons who cause the pollution. The district is not attempting to do "indirectly" that which it is prohibited from doing directly. It is specifically authorized to both regulate and assess fees on developments that attract mobile sources of pollution, i.e., emissions generated by motor vehicles. In addition, the ISR fees are valid regulatory fees.