Judge Rules Caltrans Lied To Support Highway 1 Expansion

KCBS_740SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — A federal judge has rejected state environmental approval of a plan to expand Highway 1 in Pacifica.

U.S. District Court Judge Vince Chhabria said Friday state transportation officials gave a federal wildlife agency incorrect information when seeking the agency’s approval for the work.

The California Department of Transportation proposed preserving 5 acres to offset damage the highway expansion would cause to the habitat of two endangered species _ the California red-legged frog and the San Francisco garter snake.

But Chhabria said that land was already slated for preservation and was therefore not a benefit that could be tied directly to the highway expansion. He ordered Caltrans to again seek the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s approval.

A Caltrans spokesperson said the agency is continuing to review the court’s ruling, and will be working with its project partners to discuss options, and determine their next steps.

© Copyright 2016 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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