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Voyageur Outward Bound School v. United States

ELR Citation: 50 ELR 20064
Nos. 1:18-cv-01463 (TNM), 1:18-cv-01496 (TNM), and 1:18-cv-01499 (TNM), (D.D.C., 03/17/2020) (McFadden, J.)

A district court upheld DOI's renewal of two mineral leases that had previously been rejected for a copper-nickel mine in Superior National Forest. Businesses and environmental groups argued that DOI's authority to reconsider its decision to renew was limited to ministerial or inadvertent errors, and that basing its reconsideration on substantive legal errors misinterpreting the lease terms was arbitrary and capricious. The court found that DOI had inherent authority to not only correct clerical errors but also substantive errors, that it timely corrected an error that would have deprived a mining company of its right to valuable leases, and that its analysis explaining the need to correct the error was reasonable. It therefore granted summary judgment to DOI.