California Coastal Comm'n v. Granite Rock Company

PETITIONER: California Coastal Comm'n
RESPONDENT: Granite Rock Company
LOCATION: Harris County Courthouse

DOCKET NO.: 85-1200
DECIDED BY: Rehnquist Court (1986-1987)
LOWER COURT: United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit

CITATION: 480 US 572 (1987)
ARGUED: Dec 02, 1986
DECIDED: Mar 24, 1987

ADVOCATES:
Barbara R. Banke - on behalf of Appellee
Jeffrey P. Minear - on behalf of the United States as amicus curiae, supporting Appellee
Linus Masouredis - on behalf of Appellants

Facts of the case

Question

Media for California Coastal Comm'n v. Granite Rock Company

Audio Transcription for Oral Argument - December 02, 1986 in California Coastal Comm'n v. Granite Rock Company

Audio Transcription for Opinion Announcement - March 24, 1987 in California Coastal Comm'n v. Granite Rock Company

William H. Rehnquist:

The opinion of the Court in No. 85-1200, California Coastal Commission versus Granite Rock Company will be announced by Justice O'Connor.

Sandra Day O'Connor:

This case is here on appeal from the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit.

The Mining Act of 1872 authorizes private citizens to enter federal lands to perfect mining claims.

Appellee, Granite Rock Company holds an unpatented mining claim on federal land in California.

Granite Rock obtained approval of the from the forest service to mine limestone.

But the California Coastal Commission told Granite Rock it must also apply for a development permit from the Coastal Commission.

Granite Rock filed suit against the Commission in the Federal District Court seeking declaratory and injunctive relief on the grounds that federal laws preempted California's laws and regulations.

The District Court dismissed the action, but the Court of Appeals reversed holding that the Commission's permit requirement, which enforce state environmental standards with preemptive by the Mining Act in the forest service regulations.

In an opinion filed today, we reverse the judgment of the Court of Appeals.

In our view, neither the forest service regulations nor federal land use statutes nor the Coastal Zone Management Act, preempt the California Commission's imposition of a permit requirement to enforce reasonable environmental requirements on operation of the mining claim on federal lands.

This action comes to us in the form of a facial challenge, to any state regulation and we have no occasion here to review any specific application of California's requirements.

Justice Powell has filed an opinion concurring on part and dissenting in part in which Justice Stevens has joined; Justice Scalia has filed a dissenting opinion in which Justice White has joined.