Richland/Wilkin Joint Powers v. Fargo-Moorhead Flood Diversion, No. 15-2123 (8th Cir. 2016)Annotate this Case
The Authority is in development of a diversion project on the Red River with the Corps. In this appeal, the Authority alleged that the district court made numerous errors in granting a preliminary injunction to JPA, prohibiting the Authority's continued construction of a ring levee in communities in North Dakota (OHB ring levee). The court concluded that the district court’s finding of fact that the OHB project is a part of the larger diversion project is not clearly erroneous and broadly supports the district court’s decision to grant the injunction; the district court found adequate procedural harm and harm to the JPA’s specific environmental interests sufficient to support a preliminary injunction; and the district court did not abuse its discretion in finding that the balance of harms favored an injunction. The court also concluded that the district court did not err in finding that the dormant Commerce Clause does not preclude JPA’s Minnesota Environmental Procedure Act (MEPA), Minn. R. 4410.3100, claim. Finally, the court concluded that it was permissible for the district court to waive the bond requirement based on its evaluation of public interest in this specific case. Accordingly, the court affirmed the judgment.