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Kane County, Utah v. United States — F.3d —, Case No. 18-4122 (June 25, 2019)

Jun 25, 2019

The Tenth Circuit addressed the U.S. Supreme Court’s recent holding, in Town of Chester, New York v. Laroe Estates, Inc., 137 S.Ct. 1645 (2017), that an intervenor as of right under Fed. R. Civ. P. 24 must meet the requirements of Article III standing if the intervenor seeks relief not already requested by an existing party.  Applying this rule, a majority of the panel held that SUWA need not show independent Article III standing because it sought the same relief as the United States, an existing party.  As part of its Rule 24 analysis, however, the majority also held that SUWA’s interests may not be adequately represented by the United States, citing the government’s duty to represent broad public interests, rather than specific environmental interests, in the litigation.  Writing in dissent, Judge Tymkovich argued that these two holdings were fundamentally inconsistent, and that SUWA lacked the imminent injury-in-fact necessary to establish Article III standing.