Tuesday, October 27, 2015

U.S. District Court in Colorado Closes Case Relating to Challenge of the BLM Hydraulic Fracturing Rule

On October 19, 2015, the U.S. District Court for the District of Colorado ordered the administrative closure of the proceedings in the case Southern Ute Indian Tribe v. U.S. Department of Interior.

A number of parties initiated litigation, including the Southern Ute Indian Tribe, against the U.S. Bureau of Land Management challenging the BLM final rule governing hydraulic fracturing on Federal and Indian Lands.

After being granted a motion for preliminary injunction barring enforcement of the BLM final rule, the Southern Ute Indian Tribe along with the U.S. Department of Interior filed a joint motion to stay proceedings as they are engaged in settlement negotiations.

The U.S. District Court for Colorado held that “upon the parties’ indication that they intend to engage in settlement discussions for an extended . . . period of time, the Court finds a stay, coupled with periodic status reports, to pose unnecessary administrative burdens on the Court and the parties. Given that the parties intend to resolve this action without further litigation, it is appropriate to administratively close this case, subject to any party moving to reopen it upon a showing of good cause at the conclusion of any and all settlement efforts.”

Further information on this case is available at docket no. 1:15-cv-01303.

Written by Chloe Marie - Research Fellow

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