Plata et al v. Schwarzenegger et al

Filing 2499

ORDER denying 2494 Defendants' motion for six-month extension and 2497 Plaintiffs' motion for order to show cause re: contempt. Signed by Judges Stephen Reinhardt, Lawrence K. Karlton, and Thelton E. Henderson on 12/06/12. (tehlc3, COURT STAFF) (Filed on 12/6/2012)

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1 2 3 4 IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURTS 5 FOR THE EASTERN DISTRICT OF CALIFORNIA 6 AND THE NORTHERN DISTRICT OF CALIFORNIA 7 UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT COMPOSED OF THREE JUDGES 8 PURSUANT TO SECTION 2284, TITLE 28 UNITED STATES CODE 9 10 RALPH COLEMAN, et al., 11 Plaintiffs, NO. CIV S-90-0520 LKK JFM P 12 v. 13 EDMUND G. BROWN JR., et al., 14 Defendants. THREE-JUDGE COURT 15 16 MARCIANO PLATA, et al., Plaintiffs, 17 18 v. 19 EDMUND G. BROWN JR., et al., 20 Defendants. NO. C01-1351 TEH THREE-JUDGE COURT ORDER DENYING DEFENDANTS’ MOTION FOR SIX-MONTH EXTENSION AND PLAINTIFFS’ MOTION FOR ORDER TO SHOW CAUSE RE: CONTEMPT 21 22 Defendants made clear in their November 15, 2012 population report that they 23 anticipate missing the December 27, 2012 deadline for reducing the prison population to no 24 more than 147% design capacity. They ask that the Court grant a six-month extension of the 25 deadlines for both the 147% benchmark and the final 137.5% benchmark. They further ask 26 that they not be required to file a benchmark report that explains their failure to achieve a 27 reduction to 147% design capacity by December 27, 2012. See Jan. 12, 2010 Order at 5 28 (discussing requirements of reports to be filed within fourteen days of each benchmark 1 deadline). Plaintiffs oppose these motions and request that the Court order defendants to 2 show cause why they should not be held in contempt for their anticipated failure to timely 3 achieve the 147% benchmark. 4 On October 11, 2012, the Court ordered the parties to develop and submit to the Court 5 by January 7, 2013, plans by which defendants will achieve the 137.5% benchmark by 6 June 27 and/or December 27, 2013. As part of that process, the parties shall advise us in 7 their January 7 submissions whether they can agree on a six-month extension of the final 8 137.5% benchmark. Accordingly, the Court DENIES defendants’ present motion for such an 9 extension as premature. If the parties cannot agree that the 137.5% benchmark deadline 10 should be extended to December 27, 2013 – and, by extension, that the 147% benchmark 11 deadline should be extended to June 27, 2013 – they shall include a discussion of their 12 respective positions in their January 7 filings. 13 These filings – submitted either separately or, preferably, jointly – should outline how 14 defendants will achieve the 137.5% benchmark (by both dates specified above, unless the 15 parties have agreed to a six-month extension). The Court therefore GRANTS defendants’ 16 motion to waive the December 27, 2012 benchmark report due by January 10, 2013. While 17 the Court is concerned that defendants have not done everything in their power to achieve the 18 147% benchmark, the Court is more interested at this time in the additional steps that 19 defendants will take to achieve the final 137.5% benchmark. Defendants shall file their 20 regular monthly report on or before January 15, 2013. 21 Finally, the Court DENIES plaintiffs’ motion to begin contempt proceedings. 22 Plaintiffs have cited no authority for issuing an order to show cause regarding contempt 23 based on anticipated, rather than actual, noncompliance with a court order. Nor, given the 24 Court’s order to submit plans by January 7, 2013, are contempt proceedings appropriate at 25 this time. 26 Defendants correctly observe that substantial progress has been made as a result of 27 this Court’s orders and the Supreme Court’s affirmance of the population reduction order. 28 However, much work remains to be done, and defendants must take further steps to achieve 2 1 full compliance. The Court expects the parties’ proposed plans to provide a specific means 2 for doing so, while providing all the specific information called for in this Order as well as in 3 the October 11, 2012 Order, including without limitation paragraph four of the October 4 Order. 5 In the January 7, 2013 report, defendants shall also advise the Court of their present 6 intentions with respect to returning out-of-state prisoners, including numbers and dates, as 7 well as the effect on their compliance with the Court’s orders of the enactment of 8 Proposition 36. Defendants shall provide such information in advance to plaintiffs so that 9 plaintiffs may have the opportunity to comment on this portion of the defendants’ separate 10 report, unless such information is contained in a joint report. 11 It remains the Court’s hope that the parties will submit jointly proposed plans, and the 12 Court reiterates that the Honorable Peter Siggins remains available to assist the parties if they 13 are unable to reach agreement on their own. 14 15 IT IS SO ORDERED. 16 17 Dated: 12/06/12 18 STEPHEN REINHARDT UNITED STATES CIRCUIT JUDGE NINTH CIRCUIT COURT OF APPEALS 19 20 21 Dated: 12/06/12 22 LAWRENCE K. KARLTON SENIOR UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE EASTERN DISTRICT OF CALIFORNIA 23 24 25 Dated: 12/06/12 26 THELTON E. HENDERSON SENIOR UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE NORTHERN DISTRICT OF CALIFORNIA 27 28 3

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