Federal Court upholds decision against Millennium Pipeline Company
US District Court sides with US Commerce Department, New York State and the Village.
Village of Croton-on-Hudson, April 6, 2006: The Village has secured a decisive ruling from the United States District Court for the District of Columbia affirming the decision of the Secretary of the United States Department of Commerce upholding the New York State Department of State’s (“NYSDOS”) determination that Millennium Pipeline Company’s proposed pipeline project does not comply with the requirements of the Coastal Zone Management Act (“CZMA”). This decision upholds the expert determinations of Federal and State regulators that there exist available alternative routes that would avoid unnecessary, irreparable harm to natural resources within the Village, including portions of Haverstraw Bay, the protected wetlands in the Village’s Jane E. Lytle Memorial Arboretum, and the Croton-on-Hudson
well-field, the Village’s only viable source of drinking water.
Neil L. Levy, a partner in the Washington, D.C. office of Kirkland & Ellis LLP, has represented the Village since 2001 in the Millennium litigation. Mr. Levy stated, “I am quite pleased that the District Court has denied Millennium’s appeal, upheld the Commerce Secretary’s decision in full, and ruled in the Village’s favor on every issue.”
Mr. Levy went on to note that in light of the District Court’s well-reasoned March 31st decision, the Village is hopeful that “Millennium will abandon its unlawful and ill-advised attempts to construct an environmentally dangerous pipeline along the route that it has proposed.” “The Village nonetheless remains willing to work with Millennium, and has always been in favor of appropriate energy infrastructure projects that, without unnecessarily harming New York’s coastal resources, increase the amount of pipeline capacity available to citizens and businesses in New York,” Levy added.
The Village of Croton-on-Hudson financed the majority of the legal work to defend the NYSDOS and Commerce Secretary rulings, with assistance from the Village of Briarcliff Manor and the Town of Cortlandt. Mr. Levy noted that, if it chose not to abandon its plans, Millennium would have sixty days to appeal the ruling.
"This is the good news we have been waiting for!" noted Fran Allen, chair of Croton’s committee that oversees the Village’s Coastal Zone review work.