Blog: Judge finds that Water Boards have authority to regulate discharges of dredge and fill material as waste under Porter-Cologne Water Quality Control Act
On February 18, 2021, the First Appellate District issued an opinion in Sweeney et al. v. California Regional Water Quality Control Bd., San Francisco Bay Region et al. (Case No. A153583) (“Sweeney”). The opinion is much anticipated given its relevance to the continued validity of the State Water Resources Control Board’s recently adopted State Procedures for Discharges of Dredged and Fill Material (“Procedures”). The Appellate Court reversed the lower court in the entirety, substantially deferring to the actions and prosecutorial discretion of the State Water Resources Control Board (“State Water Board”) and San Francisco Bay Regional Water Quality Control Board (“Regional Water Board”, collectively, “Water Boards”) based on application of a revised standard of review.