ELPC disappointed in agencies appealing Illiana Tollway Court choice

The Environmental Law & Policy Center recently stated its disappointment that the Illinois Department of Transportation, the Federal Highway Administration and the Indiana Department of Transportation have appealed a recent decision made by the federal court.

The decision involved the various agencies’ Record of Determination (ROD) and Environmental Impact Statements (EIS). The federal court decided that these two were invalid because of the agencies’ underlying analyses, which were faulty.

As of its June 16 Opinion, the Federal District Court ruled that IDOT, INDOT and the FHWA’s approvals for the last Tier One EIS and ROD violated the National Environmental Policy Act.

“The Environmental Law & Policy Center is disappointed the Federal Highway Administration, Illinois DOT and Indiana DOT are continuing their fiscal irresponsibility with the boondoggle proposed Illiana Tollway,” Howard Learner, the lead attorney, said. “The federal court appropriately said the Environmental Impact Statement was flawed because of circular reasoning. The federal and state transportation agencies have a right to appeal, but that doesn’t mean that it’s in the public’s interest to do so. The proposed new Illiana Tollway is a fiscal boondoggle, is contrary to sound regional transportation policy, and would degrade the very special Midewin National Tallgrass Prairie."

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Illinois Department of Transportation

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