Monday, July 23, 2012

State Of New Jersey v. EPA

Jan 20: In the U.S. Court of Appeals, D.C. Circuit, Case 05-1097 consolidated with 05-1104, 05-1116, 05-1118, 05-1158, 05-1159, 05-1160, 05-1162, 05-1163, 05-1164, 05-1167, 05-1174, 05-1175, 05-1176, 05-1183, 05-1189, 05-1263, 05-1267, 05-1270, 05-1271, 05-1275, 05-1277, 06-1211, 06-1220, 06-1231, 06-1287, 06-1291, 06-1293, 06-1294. The Appeals Court summarizes saying, "In our earlier decision in this case, New Jersey v. EPA, 663 F.3d 1279 (D.C. Cir. 2011) [See WIMS 1/3/12], we held that Movants, a group of Native American tribes and tribal associations who intervened on behalf of petitioners in the underlying Clean Air Act litigation, were entitled to fees and costs under section 307(f) of the Act. When the parties were unable to agree on the amount of fees, Movants filed an updated motion seeking $369,027.25, including compensation for 1,181 hours of work and for costs. For the reasons set forth below, we agree with EPA that the fee request is excessive and thus award substantially less than Movants seek.
    The Appeals Court notes that to calculate a reasonable fee, "we use the lodestar method, multiplying a reasonable rate by the reasonable number of hours." EPA does not object to Movants' proposed hourly rates, and in order to simplify things recommends a flat rate of $305.125 which is agreed to. However, at issue is the "reasonable number of hours." After careful analysis, the Appeals Court concludes, "In sum, Movants reasonably expended 355.95 hours on the litigation. Multiplying this by $305.125 per hour, we award Movants $108,609.24 in compensation for attorney time. We also award Movants the $3,186.50 in costs they seek and that EPA does not contest."
    Access the complete opinion (click here). [#Air, #CADC]
32 Years of Environmental Reporting for serious Environmental Professionals

No comments: