Justia U.S. 1st Circuit Court of Appeals Opinion SummariesArticles Posted in Aviation
Milton, MA v. FAA
In this case, the Town of Milton, Massachusetts, petitioned for a judicial review of the Federal Aviation Administration's (FAA) final order authorizing a new flight procedure at Boston's Logan International Airport. The new procedure, aimed at increasing safety and efficiency, covers a narrower swath of airspace over the Town of Milton. The Town argued that the FAA's environmental analysis of the noise impacts failed to comply with the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA). However, the United States Court of Appeals For the First Circuit dismissed the Town's petition, ruling that the Town does not have standing to challenge the FAA's final order. The court concluded that the harms the Town asserted, including the impact of noise on its residents and the time and money spent addressing these issues, were not legally cognizable harms to the Town itself. The court agreed with other courts of appeals that have dismissed municipal NEPA challenges to FAA orders for lack of Article III standing because those challenges failed to show cognizable injury to the municipalities themselves. View "Milton, MA v. FAA" on Justia Law
Overka v. American Airlines, Inc.
This suit arose after American Airlines began charging passengers $2 per bag to use curbside check-in services. A class of skycaps - airport porters who assist passengers with curbside check-in - working at airports throughout the country sued American Airlines. Plaintiffs alleged that American failed adequately to notify customers that skycaps would not receive the proceeds from the new charge and that the compensation decreased significantly following the introduction of the new charge. On behalf of the Massachusetts skycaps, Plaintiff sued for violations of the Massachusetts Tips Law. Plaintiffs also sued on behalf of the class for tortious interference with a contract and unjust enrichment or quantum meruit. The district court dismissed the action, concluding that the federal Airline Deregulation Act preempted each of the skycaps’ claims. The First Circuit affirmed, holding that federal law preempted the skycaps’ state statutory and common law claims. View "Overka v. American Airlines, Inc." on Justia Law
Safeguarding the Historic Hanscom Area’s Irreplacable Resources, Inc. v. Fed. Aviation Admin.
The FAA issued permits for modernization of the mixed-use Hanscom airport near the historic towns of Lexington and Concord. Opponents raised challenges under the Department of Transportation Act, 49 U.S.C. 303(c), the National Historic Preservation Act, 16 U.S.C. 470f, and the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), 42 U.S.C. 4321-4347. The First Circuit rejected the challenges. The FAA adequately examined alternatives; the determination that none would be prudent was reasonable. The agency went beyond considering reasonably foreseeable impacts and considered worst case scenarios.