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News Posted on August 4, 2017

Professor Frank Comments on California Supreme Court Ruling for Associated Press

Professor of Environmental Practice Richard Frank ’74 commented for the Associated Press on a California Supreme Court ruling regarding the high-speed rail project proposed by Governor Jerry Brown. The article appeared in numerous media outlets, including the Los Angeles Times and Washington Post.

The decision holds that federal law does not allow the state-owned rail projects to completely bypass California environmental review, providing hope for opponents of the high-speed rail who wish to challenge it in court. Professor Frank said that the ruling was "not a sweeping or unqualified victory" for project opponents, because in some cases, federal law will trump the state statute.

"The standard that the California Supreme Court sets here is a fact-based one," he said. "In some circumstances, there will be federal pre-emption but not on a blanket basis."

Frank is a leader in the field of environmental law and the founding Director of the California Environmental Law and Policy Center at UC Davis School of Law.