Client Successes Apr 12, 2018

CV Link Lawsuit Dismissed

BB&K Attorneys Defended Against Funding Challenge

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Best Best & Krieger attorneys Jeffrey V. Dunn, Steven C. DeBaun and Daniel L. Richards filed a successful motion for the Riverside County Transportation Commission that resulted in dismissal of a lawsuit challenging funding of CV Link in Riverside County. CV Link is an approximately 50 mile multi-modal transportation corridor designed for use by bicyclists, pedestrians and low-speed electric vehicles along the Whitewater River from Palm Springs to Coachella.
 
Similar motions filed by co-defendants Coachella Valley Association of Governments and South Coast Air Quality Management District were also granted, resulting in a complete dismissal of the lawsuit. CVAG was represented by the firm of Jenkins & Hogin (which, by coincidence, joined Best Best & Krieger a few weeks following the ruling.)
 
Attorney Jim Ferguson brought the lawsuit, which challenged the use of Measure A tax revenues, emission reduction grants and transportation mitigation fees on CV Link. Ferguson claimed that CV Link was not eligible for Measure A funding because it was not specifically listed in Measure A and because CV Link did not qualify as a “road” under the Measure. Ferguson further claimed that CV Link was ineligible for other funding sources because CVAG did not adopt a “neighborhood electric vehicle transportation plan.”
 
Riverside County Superior Court Judge James Latting determined that California law did not support any of Ferguson’s claims. Latting found that both Measure A and transportation mitigation fees may be used to fund construction of CV Link and that a “neighborhood electric vehicle transportation plan” was not required, and also rejected all of Ferguson’s other arguments. The order granting the dismissal without leave to amend was signed on Feb. 21.
 
The ruling is important for the region in that it supports CVAG’s ambitious and forward-looking CV Link project that seeks to facilitate new modes of transportation within the Coachella Valley. In addition, it validates the use of Measure A for new and innovative technologies and transportation programs.
 
The first 2.3 miles of CV Link, between Vista Chino Road in Palm Springs and Ramon Road in Cathedral City, officially opened on Feb. 23.
 
The case is Ferguson v. Coachella Valley Association of Governments, et al., Case No. PSC 1705629.

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