United States District Court, E.D. California
YOCHA DEHE WINTUN NATION, VIEJAS BAND OF KUMEYAAY INDIANS, and SYCUAN BAND OF THE KUMEYAAY NATION, Plaintiffs,
GAVIN NEWSOM, Governor of California, and the STATE OF CALIFORNIA, Defendants.
ORDER DENYING THE CALIFORNIA GAMING ASSOCIATION'S
MOTION FOR RECONSIDERATION
A. MENDEZ, UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
January 3, 2019, the Yocha Dehe Wintun Nation, Sycuan Band of
the Kumeyaay Nation, and Viejas Band of Kumeyaay Indians
(collectively “Plaintiffs” or
“Tribes”) filed a complaint against the State of
California and Governor Gavin Newsom (collectively
“Defendants”). Compl., ECF No. 1. Plaintiffs
alleged Defendants breached their Tribal-State Compacts and
the covenants of good faith and fair dealing implied therein.
See Compl. ¶¶ 124-135. Shortly thereafter,
Defendants filed a motion to dismiss, and the California
Gaming Association (“CGA”) filed a motion to
intervene. Defs.' Mot. to Dismiss, ECF No. 17; CGA's
Mot. to Intervene, ECF No. 11. The Court granted
Defendants' motion to dismiss, finding Plaintiffs failed
to state a claim upon which relief could be granted. Order,
ECF No. 29. Absent a pending case or controversy, the Court
sua sponte denied CGA's motion to intervene as moot.
contends the Court must reconsider its prior
order.Mot. for Reconsideration
(“Mot.”), ECF No. 31. Plaintiffs oppose the
motion. Opp'n, ECF No. 41. Defendants do not. Statement
of Non-opp'n, ECF No. 42. For the reasons set forth
below, the Court DENIES CGA's motion for reconsideration.
Rule of Civil Procedure 59(e) allows parties to file a motion
“to alter or amend a judgement” within 28 days of
entry of judgment. Fed. R. Civ. Proc. 59(e). Rule 59(e)
“offers an extraordinary remedy, to be used sparingly
in the interests of finality and conservation of judicial
resources.” Carroll v. Nakatani, 342 F.3d 934,
945 (9th Cir. 2003). “[A]bsent highly unusual
circumstances, ” a district court will not grant a
motion for reconsideration unless (1) it is presented with
newly discovered evidence; (2) the Court committed clear
error; or (3) there was an intervening change in the
controlling law. 389 Orange Street Partners v.
Arnold, 179 F.3d 656, 665 (9th Cir. 1999). Parties may
not use Rule 59(e) motions “to raise arguments . . .
for the first time when they could reasonably have been
raised earlier in the litigation.” Kona Enters v.
Estate of Bishop, 229 F.3d 877, 890 (9th Cir. 2000).
argues the Court committed clear error in light of Allied
Concrete & Supply Co. v. Baker, 904 F.3d 1053, 1066
(9th Cir. 2018); W. Coast Seafood Processors Ass'n v.
NRDC, 643 F.3d 701, 704 (9th Cir. 2011); Canatella v.
California, 404 F.3d 1106, 1109 n.1 (9th Cir. 2005); and
United States v. Ford, 650 F.2d 1141, 1143 (9th Cir.
1981). CGA interprets these cases to stand for the
proposition that dismissal of a case does not moot a
non-party's motion to intervene so long as a party
“kept the underlying action alive by filing a notice of
appeal.” Mot. at 1 (quoting Canatella, 404
F.3d at 1109 n.1). The Court does not agree with CGA's
reading of these cases.
procedural posture of this case materially distinguishes it
from Allied Concrete & Supply Co., W. Coast Seafood
Processors Ass'n, Canatella, and Ford. The district
courts in those cases denied proposed-intervenors'
motions to intervene on non-mootness grounds. The proposed
intervenors appealed. Subsequently, the underlying actions
were dismissed-either voluntarily or by court order. The
proposed intervenors' pending appeals raised the question
of whether dismissal of the underlying suits mooted the
appeals. In W. Coast Seafood Processors, 643 F.3d at
704 and Ford, 650 F.2d at 1142-43, the Ninth Circuit held the
proposed intervenors' appeals became moot when the
underlying suits were dismissed and neither party appealed
the dismissal. In Canatella, however, a party to the
underlying action appealed the lower court's dismissal.
404 F.3d at 1109 n.1. The Ninth Circuit found, in that
context, that the proposed intervenor's appeal likewise
remained a live controversy. 404 F.3d at 1109 n.1. Allied
Concrete & Supply Co., 904 F.3d at 1066 extended
Canatella, holding that “a potential petition
for rehearing or certiorari keeps a case alive for the
purpose of appealing a motion to intervene.”
Allied Concrete & Supply, the appeal of a motion to
intervene satisfies Article III's “case or
controversy” requirement so long as parties to the
underlying action have an avenue for challenging the district
court's dismissal. 904 F.3d at 1066-67. A reviewing court
may ultimately reverse the lower court's dismissal; in
which case, the propriety of a non-party's ability to
intervene is also at issue. See id.; see also
Canatella, 404 F.3d at 1109 n.1. But neither Allied
Concrete & Supply nor Canatella spoke to the question of
whether a district court-having dismissed a case in its
entirety-should adjudicate a motion to intervene simply
because one of the parties appealed that dismissal. Indeed,
this Court found no basis for doing so when it denied
CGA's motion as moot in its June 18, 2019 order. Unlike
in Allied Concrete & Supply, Plaintiffs do not contend
the Court's dismissal bars CGA from appealing its motion
to intervene. In fact, Plaintiff's concede CGA could
renew its motion to intervene if the Ninth Circuit reversed
this Court's dismissal. See Opp'n at 2. The
Court's June 18 order only prevents CGA from
participating in Plaintiffs' pending appeal. But nothing
in CGA's motion suggests it is entitled to that type of
not demonstrated that the Court committed clear error when it
denied CGA's motion to intervene as moot. Moreover, CGA
did not contend that newly-discovered evidence or an
intervening change in the controlling law warranted
reconsideration. Accordingly, CGA's motion is DENIED.
reasons set forth above, the Court DENIES CGA's ...