On Tuesday, November 17, 2009, Chevalier, Allen & Lichman filed a Petition for Writ of Certiorari to the United States Supreme Court on behalf of its client County of Delaware, Pennsylvania (“Delaware”). The Petition asks the Court to reverse the decision of the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals in County of Rockland, New York, et
East Coast Airspace Redesign Challenge Heard at D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals
A multi-year challenge to the Federal Aviation Administration’s reorganization of the airspace in four East Coast states culminated on May 11, 2009 with oral argument at the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals before Chief Judge David Sentelle, and Judges Douglas Ginsberg and Ray Randolph. The litigation team was made up of 12 law firms representing public entities and environmental organizations from Connecticut, New York, New Jersey and Pennsylvania. The team designated three of its members to present the oral argument: (1) Richard Blumenthal, Attorney General of the State of Connecticut; (2) Larry Liebesman, of Holland & Knight, representing communities in Rockland County, New York; and (3) Dr. Barbara Lichman of Chevalier, Allen & Lichman, representing Delaware County, Pennsylvania. The FAA was represented by Department of Justice attorneys Mary Gay Sprague and Lane McFadden.
In the 30 minutes allotted to the opening presentation, the team emphasized the FAA’s failure to adhere to governing statutes and regulations in implementing the Airspace Redesign Project. Specifically, Attorney General Blumenthal presented the Court with a litany of FAA lapses in conducting the analysis of the project’s noise impacts. The Attorney General argued that the mistakes and omissions from the analysis resulted in artificial and inaccurate minimization of those impacts. In addition, the Attorney General challenged FAA’s failure to reveal even the artificially minimized noise impacts to the affected public for review and comment, as it is obligated to do under the National Environmental Policy Act, 42 U.S.C. § 4321, et seq. …
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