Description: Lawsuit challenging President Trump's Executive Order 13771 on "“Reducing Regulation and Controlling Regulatory Costs” and implementing guidance issued by the Office of Management and Budget.
California v. Trump
Filing Date Type File Action Taken Summary 04/02/2020 Memorandum Opinion Download Defendants' motion for summary judgment granted and case dismissed. Federal Court Dismissed States’ Challenge to Trump Deregulatory Executive Order. The federal district court for the District of Columbia concluded that three states—California, Minnesota, and Oregon—did not have Article III standing to challenge President Trump’s Executive Order 13,771, which, among other things, required federal agencies to identify two existing regulations for repeal for every new regulation proposed, to offset the incremental costs of new regulations by eliminating costs associated with two prior regulations, and to adhere to an “annual cap” that prohibited new regulations that in the aggregate exceed an agency’s “total incremental cost allowance.” The court considered four deregulatory actions or delayed regulatory actions that were the focus of the states’ standing arguments—including the repeal of the Federal Highway Administration’s (FHWA’s) Greenhouse Gas (GHG) Performance Measure and the Department of Energy’s delay in issuing new energy efficiency standards for residential cooking products—and found that the states had not demonstrated that the executive order was the cause of any material delay or any deregulatory action. Regarding the repeal of the FHWA’s GHG Performance Measure, the court found that the existing evidence indicated that “substantive policy considerations” were the basis for repeal even though the executive order precipitated the FHWA’s review of its regulations. (The court also said it was “far from clear” that the states had demonstrated that the repeal would cause particularized harm.) Regarding the delay in energy efficiency standards, the court assumed without deciding that the failure to finalize the standards had contributed to climate change and that the states had suffered injuries related to climate change. The court found, however, that “undisputed” evidence demonstrated that the executive order did not cause the delay. 04/04/2019 Complaint Download Complaint filed. Alleging Climate Change Injuries, Three States Launched Challenge to Trump’s “Reducing Regulation” Executive Order. California, Oregon, and Minnesota filed a new lawsuit challenging President Trump’s Executive Order 13771 on “Reducing Regulation and Controlling Regulatory Costs” as well as guidance issued by the Office of Management and Budget to assist agencies in implementing the executive order. The executive order includes, among other directives, a “two-for-one” requirement that agencies repeal at least two regulations to offset each new regulation. In their lawsuit, filed in federal court in the District of Columbia, the three states alleged that the executive order had been a cause of the Trump administration’s failure to finalize regulations proposed during the Obama administration, including rules proposed to address energy conservation and greenhouse gas emissions. The states’ complaint also included allegations detailing climate change-related impacts the states were suffering. The states said that although they had taken significant measures to address their own greenhouse gas emissions, action on a nationwide scale was necessary. They cited several rulemaking processes allegedly affected by the order, including the failure to implement municipal solid waste landfill emission guidelines, the delay and suspension of BLM’s methane waste rule, the repeal of the Federal Highway Administration’s Greenhouse Gas Performance Measure, and the failure to finalize proposed energy efficiency standards for residential conventional cooking products. The complaint alleged violations of the separation of powers doctrine and Take Care Clause, asserted that President Trump and other defendants had acted outside the scope of their authority, and contended that the agency defendants violated the Administrative Procedure Act.