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W. Watersheds Project v. Nat'l Park Serv., No. 21-00219, 2021 WL 3560803 (D. Idaho Aug. 11, 2021) (Nye, C. J.)


W. Watersheds Project v. Nat'l Park Serv., No. 21-00219, 2021 WL 3560803 (D. Idaho Aug. 11, 2021) (Nye, C. J.)

Re:  Request for records concerning management of livestock grazing and associated infrastructure in three units of National Park System

Disposition:  Granting plaintiff's motion to expedite; denying defendant's motion for stay pending court's decision regarding motion to transfer venue

  • Litigation Considerations, Venue:  The court relates that "'Defendant NPS requests that the Court stay all pending deadlines in this case, including Defendant's deadline to respond to the Complaint under Fed. R. Civ. P. 12, until after the Court resolves this motion to transfer.'"  The court relates that defendant argues that "'[i]t makes little sense to force Defendant NPS to mount a defense in the District of Idaho when in the interests of justice, the case should be transferred to Utah.'"  The court finds that "[w]ith respect to some of the FOIA requests at issue in this suit, both [plaintiff] and the public's right to know what the government is doing has already been delayed for more than two years."  "Forcing [plaintiff] to wait for a responsive pleading – much less than for responsive documents – would be unduly prejudicial."  "Further, given its heavy civil caseload and upcoming criminal trials, [the] Court is unable to predict when it will decide the venue issue."  "As such, a stay would be indefinite and would unduly prejudice [plaintiff]."  "NPS will also not be subject to hardship or inequity if the stay request is denied."  "While NPS suggests in its reply brief that a stay is warranted so the 'Government can respond in the more convenient transferee forum if the motion is granted,' NPS's answer or responsive pleading should be substantially similar – if not identical – regardless of whether this case is ultimately adjudicated in the District of Idaho or in the District of Utah."  "NPS will also be required to confer with counsel regarding case management procedures and deadlines anywhere this case is adjudicated."  "Forcing them to do so now, rather than when the venue issue is decided, will not prejudice NPS."  "Finally, the Court's interest in staying the case at this stage of the litigation is minimal."
Court Decision Topic(s)
District Court opinions
Litigation Considerations, Venue and Removal
Updated September 2, 2021