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Administrative Law Keyed to Lawson
City of West Chicago, Illinois v. NRC
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*Case Brief Anatomy includes: Brief Prologue, Complete Case Brief, Brief Epilogue
- The Brief Prologue provides necessary case brief introductory information and includes:
- Topic: Identifies the topic of law and where this case fits within your course outline.
- Parties: Identifies the cast of characters involved in the case.
- Procedural Posture & History: Shares the case history with how lower courts have ruled on the matter.
- Case Key Terms, Acts, Doctrines, etc.: A case specific Legal Term Dictionary.
- Case Doctrines, Acts, Statutes, Amendments and Treatises: Identifies and Defines Legal Authority used in this case.
- The Case Brief is the complete case summarized and authored in the traditional Law School I.R.A.C. format. The Pro case brief includes:
- Brief Facts: A Synopsis of the Facts of the case.
- Rule of Law: Identifies the Legal Principle the Court used in deciding the case.
- Facts: What are the factual circumstances that gave rise to the civil or criminal case? What is the relationship of the Parties that are involved in the case. Review the Facts of this case here:
KM operated a milling facility for the production of thorium and thorium compounds from 1967 to 1973 in West Chicago. The plant closed, and KM submitted a plan to the NRC in 1979 to decommission the site and dispose of the contaminated materials. KM had a “source material” license from the NRC, allowing it to possess and store thorium ores. The NRC issued Amendment No. 3 to KM’s license in 1981, which authorized the demolition of six additional buildings and the receipt and storage of onsite of contaminated material that was formerly taken away from the site. The City requested the District Court to set aside Amendment No. 3, claiming that it violated the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) because no EIS was issued before approval, and that the City had no notice of KM’s request for an amendment and therefore no opportunity to request a hearing. The District Court temporarily enjoined KM’s activities under the amendment and ordered the NRC to give notice to the City and consider its request for a hearing. The NRC gave notice to the City, and then denied the City’s request for a formal, trial-like hearing to address the contentions it made in the written materials it had submitted.
- Issue(s): Lists the Questions of Law that are raised by the Facts of the case.
- Holding: Shares the Court's answer to the legal questions raised in the issue.
- Concurring / Dissenting Opinions: Includes valuable concurring or dissenting opinions and their key points.
- Reasoning and Analysis: Identifies the chain of argument(s) which led the judges to rule as they did.
- The Brief Prologue closes the case brief with important forward-looking discussion and includes:
- Policy: Identifies the Policy if any that has been established by the case.
- Court Direction: Shares where the Court went from here for this case.