August 9, 2012

Summary of August 8, 2012 conference report for civil cases

The following is our summary of the Supreme Court’s actions on petitions for review in civil cases from the Court’s conference on Wednesday, August 8, 2012. The summary includes those civil cases in which (1) review has been granted, (2) review has been denied but one or more justices has voted for review, or (3) the Court has ordered depublished an opinion of the Court of Appeal.

Review Granted

Neighbors For Smart Rail v. Exposition Metro Line Construction Authority (Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation), S202828—Review Granted— August 8, 2012

The question presented is whether an Environmental Impact Report (EIR) may be certified if the EIR measures the potential environmental impact of a project based on projected conditions, rather than existing conditions.

The Court of Appeal, Second District, Division Eight, held in a published opinion, Neighbors for Smart Rail v. Exposition Metro Line Construction Authority (2012) 205 Cal.App.4th 552, that in a proper case, when supported by substantial evidence, projected conditions may be used to measure environmental impacts on traffic, air quality, and greenhouse gas emissions. The court disagreed with Sunnyvale West Neighborhood Assn. v. City of Sunnyvale City Council (2010) 190 Cal.App.4th 1351, and Madera Oversight Coalition, Inc. v. County of Madera (2011) 199 Cal.App.4th 48, to the extent those holdings foreclose a lead agency’s ability to determine environmental impacts based on future conditions.

Review Denied (with dissenting justices)



Jamulians Against the Casino v. Daugherty (Jamul Indian Tribe), S202821— Depublished Court of Appeal Opinion—August 8, 2012

The issues in this case were: (1) whether the trial court properly took judicial notice of the contents of an agreement not fully incorporated into the pleadings when granting a demurrer, and (2) whether a Native American tribe was an indispensible party because it was a party to the agreement.

In the now depublished opinion, Jamulians Against the Casino v. Iwasaki (2012) 205 Cal.App.4th 632, the Third District Court of Appeal held: (1) while a court may take judicial notice of the existence of a document, it can only take notice of the truth of findings of fact, conclusions of law, judgments, and orders—the agreement in question therefore was not properly before the court; and (2) whether the tribe was an indispensible party was a determination for the trial court.

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