Vermont

FEDERAL DEFENDANTS* STIPULATED MOTION TO EXTEND STAY

FEDERAL DEFENDANTS* STIPULATED MOTION TO EXTEND STAY

UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT

FOR THE

DISTRICT OF VERMONT

VERMONTERS FOR A CLEAN ENVIRONMENT, INC., )

JUSTIN LINDHOLM, ANNETTE SMITH, )

JOHN DAVID GEERY, THOMAS E. SHEA, )

GEORGE S. HALFORD, KATHY HALFORD. AND )

TYLER RESCH )

Plaintiffs, )

v. ) Docket No. 1 : 12-CV-73

1

COLLEEN MADRID, FOREST )

SUPERVISOR OF THE GREEN MOUNTAIN )

NATIONAL FOREST; BOB BAYER, PROJECT )

COORDINATOR OF THE DEERFIELD WIND PROJECT, )

MANCHESTER DISTRICT; KATHLEEN ATKINSON, )

REGIONAL FORESTER OF THE EASTERN REGION, )

IN THEIR OFFICIAL CAPACITIES AS EMPLOYEES )

OF THE U.S.D.A FOREST SERVICE )

Defendants, )

)

DEERFIELD WIND, LLC )

Defendant-Intervenor. )

FEDERAL DEFENDANTS* STIPULATED MOTION TO EXTEND STAY

Pursuant to Fed. R. Civ. P. 6(b) and Local Rule 7, Federal Defendants, with the consent

of all parties, move to extend the stay currently in place in this litigation. In support of this

motion. Federal Defendants state as follows:

MEMORANDUM IN SUPPORT OF STIPULATED MOTION

On October 8,20 12, Defendant-Intervenor sent the Forest Service written notice that

some of the blades to be used on the wind turbines for the Deerfield Wind Project are no longer

available. Because of this unavailability, Defendant-Intervenor explained that it would need to

use different, longer blades for some of the Deerfield Wind Project wind turbines. With the

change to the blade lengths, as proposed by Deerfield Wind, the Deerfield Wind Project

specifications changed from what was previously provided by Defendant-Intervenor and

considered during the National Environmental Policy Act (“NEPA”) process. Defendants, under

the applicable law, are required to analyze the change to determine whether a supplemental

Environmental Impact Statement (“EIS”) is required. 40 C.F.R. 5 1502.9(c).

On November 5, 20 12, the Court stayed this litigation following the Federal Defendants’

Stipulated Motion for Stay (Docket No. 53) so that the Federal Defendants could meet the

requirement for analysis of this proposed change in circumstances. As of today, the persons the

Forest Service identified to analyze and document the potential impacts of the Defendant-

Intervenor’s proposed blade-length change are continuing to evaluate the environmental effects

of the proposed change, if any, on the resources discussed in the Record of Decision and Final

Environmental Impact Statement. Evaluation and analysis of data and information received from

the Defendant-Intervenor, including the preparation of written findings in a supplemental

information report, is an ongoing process involving multiple levels of the Agency in various

locations. Coordination of this effort and documentation of the work has involved significant

agency resources and time.

Although the analysis of the potential impacts of the Defendant-Intervenor’s proposed

blade length change and the preparation of a document setting out the Forest Service’s

conclusions is ongoing, this process is nearing completion. As currently provided for in this

Court’s November 5,20 12 Order, the stay in this case ends on May 6,20 13. The Forest

Service’s process related to the Defendant-Intervenor’s proposed blade length change and the

finding whether or not a supplemental environmental impact statement is necessary, although

close to a conclusion, will not be completed by May 6,20 13.

In response to the proposed change to blade lengths, the Forest Service is in the final

stages of its examination of the effects of this proposed change in circumstances pursuant to 40

C.F.R. 5 1502.9(c). Federal Defendants expect to release their proposed findings to the public in

the near future. Federal Defendants seek an extension of the stay of the litigation until

July 12,201 3, a date by which the Forest Service expects to complete its analysis and issue the

Agency’s final findings. If the stay is extended, Federal Defendants will continue to provide

periodic status reports to the Court as to the Forest Service’s progress. Depending on the

outcome of the analysis and the final findings. Federal Defendants may seek an additional

extension of time. In addition, Federal Defendants request that the Court order the parties to

confer and submit to the Court a revised case management and briefing schedule within thirty

days following issuance of final findings based upon the analysis or, if one is prepared, within

thirty days following completion of a supplemental environmental impact statement and any

related modification of the record of decision.

To answer any questions the Court might have, Federal Defendants are available at the

Court’s convenience for a telephonic status conference to discuss any of the issues raised by this

stipulated motion.

Plaintiffs and Defendant-Intervenor, through their respective counsel, have given their

consent to the relief requested herein.

This motion is filed in good faith and not for purposes of delay.

WHEREFORE, Federal Defendants, with the consent of Plaintiffs and Defendant-

Intervenor, request an extension of the stay currently in place through and including July 12,

201 3. If the stay is extended, Federal Defendants request that the Court order the parties to

confer and submit to the Court a revised case management and briefing schedule within thirty

days following the Forest Service’s issuance of final findings based upon its analysis or, if one is

prepared, within thirty days of completion of a supplemental environmental impact statement

and any related modification of the record of decision.

Dated at Burlington, in the District of Vermont, this – day of May, 201 3.

Respectfully submitted,

Defendants:

COLLEEN MADRID, FOREST SUPERVISOR OF THE GREEN MOUNTAIN NATIONAL

FOREST; BOB BAYER, PROJECT COORDINATOR OF THE DEERFIELD WIND

PROJECT, MANCHESTER DISTRICT; KATHLEEN ATKINSON, REGIONAL FORESTER

OF THE EASTERN REGION, IN THEIR OFFICIAL CAPACITIES AS EMPLOYEES OF

THE U.S.D.A FOREST SERVICE

IGNACIA S. MORENO

Assistant Attorney General

By:

Is/ Cynthia S. Huber

Cynthia S. Huber

U.S. Department of Justice

Environment and Natural Resources Division

Assistant Section Chief

Natural Resources Section

601 D St. NW

Washington, DC 20004

202-5 14-5273

Cvnthia.Huber0,usdoi . ~ o v

TRISTRAM J. COFFIN

United States Attorney

By:

Is/ Nikolas P. Kerest

Nikolas P. Kerest

Assistant United States Attorney

P.O. Box 570

Burlington, Vermont 05402

(802) 95 1-6725

Nikolas.Kerest(%usdoi.gov

 

Advertisements

2 thoughts on “FEDERAL DEFENDANTS* STIPULATED MOTION TO EXTEND STAY

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

w

Connecting to %s