Case 5:12-cv-00164 Document 39 Filed in TXSD on 09/27/13 Page 2
Rule 12(b)(7) for failure to join a required party. (Dkt. 30.) Upon an initial review
themotion, the Court ordered additional briefing on a standing issue left unaddressed
(Dkt. 35.) Plaintiffs filed responsive briefing (Dkt. 36),
an unopposed motion forleave to amend their complaint (Dkt. 37), which is also pending. For the reasons discussedbelow, Defendants' Motion to Dismiss (Dkt. 30) is hereby DENIED in its entirety. Moreover,Plaintiffs' motion for leave to amend the complaint (Dkt. 37) is hereby GRANTED.BackgroundIn the spring
2012, Defendants entered into negotiations with Plaintiffs
obtain theirright-of-way through the Ranch. (Dkt. I at
4-6; Dkt. 7 at
6-10.) During these negotiations,Plaintiffs attempted to persuade Defendants to adopt a route around the Ranch that would
the claimed ocelot habitat. (Dkt. 1 at
4-5.) Apparently, however, negotiationsfell through.
May 24, 2012, Defendants filed the eminent domain proceeding.
13; Attach. 6 at pg. 26.) On August 16, 2012, seeking recourse under the ESA,Plaintiffs sent Defendants a Notice
Intent to Sue letter for violations
8.) Nonetheless, on August 27, 2012, Defendants obtained their right-of-way across the Ranchvia a state court order.
Dkt. 7, Attach. 6 at pg. 26.)To proceed with installation
the pipeline, federal law and regulation required thatDefendants obtain a permit from the United States Army Corps
Engineers ("the Corps"), inconsultation with the United States Fish and Wildlife Service ("FWS"), regarding the effect onany ESA-listed species
their designated habitat.
16 U.S.C. § 1536(a)(2);
Plaintiffs originally alleged that they suffered injury to their environmental, aesthetic,and recreational interests. (Dkt. I at
102-103.) However, the Court noted in its prior orderthat corporate entities like Plaintiffs cannot have such interests.
See Citizens Coordinating
on Friendship Heights, Inc.
Metro. Area Transit Auth.,
765 F.2d 1169, 1173(D.C. Cir. 1985).