California Sportfishing Protecting Alliance v. Forever Resorts, LLC et al.

Filing 35

MEMORANDUM AND ORDER signed by District Judge Morrison C. England, Jr. on 6/2/2017 DENYING 25 Second Motion to Approve Settlement. (Michel, G.)

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1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT 9 EASTERN DISTRICT OF CALIFORNIA 10 11 12 CALIFORNIA SPORTFISHING PROTECTION ALLIANCE, Plaintiff, 13 14 15 16 17 v. No. 2:16-cv-01595-MCE-EFB MEMORANDUM AND ORDER FOREVER RESORTS, LLC; LAKE OROVILLE MARINA, LLC; BILL HARPER; and REX MAUGHAN, Defendants. 18 Before the Court is Plaintiff’s Second Motion for Settlement Approval, ECF 19 No. 25, under California’s Safe Drinking Water and Toxic Enforcement Act of 1986, Cal. 20 Health & Safety Code §§ 25249.5–.13, otherwise known as Proposition 65. California 21 Health and Safety Code § 25249.7(f)(4) requires parties to submit Proposition 65 22 settlements between private parties to the court for approval. For the court to approve 23 the settlement, the court must—among other things—find that “[t]he award of attorney’s 24 fees is reasonable under California law.” Id. § 25249.7(f)(4). The Court previously found 25 a rate of $795 per hour and a total of $67,500 in attorney’s fees to be unreasonable. 26 See Mem. & Order, ECF No. 20, at 4. In this second motion, Plaintiff’s counsel claims to 27 have reduced his rate to $650 per hour for purposes of calculating attorney’s fees. See 28 Mem. of P. & A. in Supp. of 2d Mot. for Settlement Approval, ECF No. 26, at 15–16. 1 1 However, Plaintiff still seeks a total of $67,500 in attorney’s fees. See Decl. of Andrew L. 2 Packard, Ex. C, ECF No. 27-3. The fact that Plaintiff’s counsel purports to reduce the 3 hourly rate while increasing the number of hours to reach the same bottom line on the 4 amount of attorney’s fees is, quite frankly, ridiculous. If Plaintiff’s counsel is too obtuse to 5 understand what the court’s intentions are in this matter, Plaintiff’s counsel can expect a 6 long delay in obtaining any attorney’s fees. Plaintiff’s Motion for Settlement Approval, 7 ECF No. 25, is DENIED.1 8 9 IT IS SO ORDERED. Dated: June 2, 2017 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 1 28 Because oral argument would not have been of material assistance, the Court ordered this 2

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