Not So Fast: Judge Stays Proposed ESA Settlement
In response to opposition from a co-plaintiff, the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia stayed approval this week of a proposed settlement agreement between another co-plaintiff and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, ordering all parties back to mediation. The settlement with the Service was intended to address the status of over 250 species listed as candidates for Endangered Species Act protection. The Department of the Interior had lauded the settlement as a key step in reducing litigation locking up the Service’s resources and budget. Mediation is scheduled to continue until June 2011.