Attorney(s) appearing for the Case
Gulf Restoration Network, Plaintiff, represented by Cynthia M. Sarthou , GULF RESTORATION NETWORK.
Gulf Restoration Network, Plaintiff, represented by Adam Babich , TULANE ENVIRONMENTAL LAW CLINIC, pro hac vice, Corinne Van Dalen , TULANE ENVIRONMENTAL LAW CLINIC, pro hac vice & Lisa W. Jordan , TULANE ENVIRONMENTAL LAW CLINIC, pro hac vice.
City of Hattiesburg, Defendant, represented by Keith W. Turner , WATKINS & EAGER, PLLC, Laura W. McCarthy , WATKINS & EAGER, PLLC & Louis B. Lanoux , WATKINS & EAGER, PLLC.
U.S. Department of Justice, Interested Party, represented by Frederick H. Turner , U. S. DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE.
Mississippi Commission on Environmental Quality, Intervenor, represented by Christopher G. Wells , MISSISSIPPI DEPARTMENT OF ENVIRONMENTAL QUALITY & Donna J. Hodges , MISSISSIPPI DEPARTMENT OF ENVIRONMENTAL QUALITY.
KEITH STARRETT, District Judge.
The Court grants Defendant's Motion  for leave to conduct depositions of EPA officials and to serve additional discovery on Plaintiff. The Court hereby extends the discovery period in this matter to July 31, 2017. Both parties may depose up to three employees of the EPA, but the depositions must occur on or before July 31, 2017. Both parties may also serve additional discovery requests upon the opposing party, but such discovery requests must be served on or before July 17, 2017. Responses to these additional discovery requests must be provided on or before July 21, 2017. To the extent any information gleaned during this extended discovery period alters or supplements the opinions of any party's experts, supplemental expert reports must be produced to opposing party on or before July 31, 2017.
The Court considered Plaintiff's objections to any extension of the discovery deadlines, but the Court believes that any information provided by the EPA is important to ensure a just disposition of this matter. The Court further notes that the production of emails between Plaintiff's counsel and EPA officials two days before the discovery deadline left virtually no time for Defendant to investigate the matter. The Court does not imply any wrongdoing on the part of counsel; to the contrary, Plaintiff's counsel only received the emails two days before they were produced. But the EPA's opinion on these matters is too important to leave unexplored, and both parties shall have the opportunity to do so.
SO ORDERED AND ADJUDGED.