As all CEQA practitioners know, a prospective petitioner in a writ proceeding challenging a CEQA determination must first exhaust available administrative remedies as a prerequisite to filing suit. But which remedies are subject to that requirement? That is the question presented in the recent case of American Chemistry Council v. Dept. of Toxic Substances Control (5th Dist. 2022) 86 Cal.App.5th 146, originally filed on November 18, 2022, and certified for publication on December 12, 2022.
The American Chemistry Council case deals with the interplay of CEQA with another statutory scheme, the so-called “Green Chemistry” law (Health & Safety Code, § 25251 et seq.) and its implementing Safer Consumer Products regulations (Cal. Code Regs., tit. 22, § 69501 et seq.), in the context of exhaustion of administrative remedies. The case illustrates the sometimes perilous position of a CEQA practitioner seeking to satisfy the exhaustion requirement while avoiding the running of the very short statutory limitations period within which a CEQA action must be commenced.
Continue Reading Fatal “Exhaustion”: Fifth District Holds CEQA’s Statute of Limitations Ran Out On Plaintiff’s Claim While Plaintiff Thought It Was Still In Process Of Exhausting Administrative Remedies