United States v. California

PETITIONER: United States
RESPONDENT: California
LOCATION: Channel Islands National Park

DECIDED BY: Burger Court (1975-1981)

CITATION: 436 US 31 (1978)
ARGUED: Feb 27, 1978
DECIDED: May 15, 1978

Allan A. Ryan, Jr. - argued the cause for the United States
Russell Iungerich - argued the cause for California

Facts of the case

Channel Islands National Monument is a nationally designated area off the coast of California, including Anacapa and Santa Barbara Islands. In 1949, President Harry S Truman issued a proclamation that extended the boundary of the National Monument within one nautical mile of the islands.


Does California have jurisdiction over the submerged lands and waters under the Submerged Lands Act of 1953?

Media for United States v. California

Audio Transcription for Oral Argument - February 27, 1978 in United States v. California

Audio Transcription for Opinion Announcement - May 15, 1978 in United States v. California

Warren E. Burger:

The judgment and opinion of the Court in 5 original, the United States against California will be announced by Mr. Justice Stewart.

Potter Stewart:

The question in this case arising under our original jurisdiction is whether California or the United States has dominion over the submerged lands and waters within the Channel Islands National Monument which is situated within the three mile marginal sea of the coast of southern California.

For the reasons set out in detail and the written opinion of the Court filed with the clerk this morning, we hold that dominion lies with California and not the United States.

Mr. Justice White has filed a dissenting opinion in which he has been joined by the Chief Justice and Mr. Justice Blackmun, and Mr. Justice Marshall took no part in the consideration or decision of the case.

Warren E. Burger:

Thank you, Mr. Justice Stewart.