|CCTA (CDTOA) v. CARB Update|
|Thursday, 12 July 2012 15:39|
In response to the May 31 order from Judge England for supplemental briefing from the parties, both CARB and NRDC filed supplemental briefs on June 14. We filed a responsive brief on June 28, 2012. CARB and NRDC will file a responsive brief by July 5, 2012, and our final closing brief will be filed on July 12, 2012.
In their supplemental briefs, CARB and NRDC argued that because the EPA recently adopted California’s Statewide Implementation Plan (SIP) regarding how to meet air quality standards, and because the SIP incorporated the CARB regulation we are challenging, somehow the legal landscape has changed. Specifically, they argue that because EPA – a federal agency – has approved the SIP, we are effectively challenging a federal law now, and not a state law. Thus, their argument goes, our Supremacy Clause challenge must fail, because the Supremacy Clause can only be used to challenge state laws, not federal laws.
We took issue with all of their premises and conclusions in our brief. We argued that regardless of EPA’s recent action, we are still challenging the state law promulgated by CARB. We also argued that a federal agency’s decision to approve a SIP does not convert a state law into a federal law – only Congress can pass federal laws and in this instance, Congress did nothing of the sort.
The supplemental arguments by CARB and NRDC represent an effort on their part to convince the court to dismiss our lawsuit without ruling on the merits of our claim. We are pressing hard for a determination that the CARB rule impacts the prices, routes and services of our member motor carriers.
Once all the briefs are submitted later this month, we hope to have a prompt ruling, but unfortunately, there is no specific time-frame in which the judge has to issue a ruling.