The lawsuits are based on a settlement of various lawsuits from the Save San Onofre Coalition and multiple environmental agencies, which was forged in November 2016. The agreement established an “avoidance area” that ensures no toll road could be built through the San Mateo Watershed and Trestles south of San Clemente.
“…The Settlement Agreement was plainly used as subterfuge by the TCA for various non-litigation oriented policy decisions, such as the designation of a several square-mile ‘avoidance area’ concerning any and all conceivable toll road alignments,” stated a letter from Dan Bane, the lead attorney for The Reserve’s lawsuit. “Such ploys are illegal as a matter of law under the Brown Act.”
The lawsuits also mentions a protective agreement between CalTrans and the TCA, which litigants are asking the court to declare illegal. The Orange County Board of Supervisors, the California Department of Transportation and the TCA’s Board of Directors are also being sued by the city.