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Case TitleCORNUCOPIA INSTITUTE v. UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE
DistrictDistrict of Columbia
CityWashington, DC
Case Number1:2016cv00148
Date Filed2016-01-29
Date Closed2018-10-15
JudgeJudge Rudolph Contreras
PlaintiffCORNUCOPIA INSTITUTE
Case DescriptionThe Cornucopia Institute submitted a FOIA request to the Department of Agriculture for records concerning 2012 visits to organic dairies in Texas and New Mexico by USDA National Organic Program officials. The agency provided a partial response. After an exchange of emails, the agency indicated it was still reviewing records for disclosure. Cornucopia Institute then filed suit.
Complaint issues: Failure to respond within statutory time limit, Adequacy - Search, Litigation - Vaughn index, Litigation - Attorney's fees

DefendantUNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE
Documents
Docket
Complaint
Complaint attachment 1
Opinion/Order [39]
User-contributed Documents
 
Docket Events (Hide)
Date FiledDoc #Docket Text

2016-01-291COMPLAINT against UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE ( Filing fee $ 400 receipt number 0090-4394267) filed by THE CORNUCOPIA INSTITUTE. (Attachments: # 1 Civil Cover Sheet)(Stotter, Daniel) (Entered: 01/29/2016)
2016-01-29Case Assigned to Judge Rudolph Contreras. (sth) (Entered: 01/29/2016)
2016-01-29SUMMONS Not Issued as to UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE (sth) (Entered: 01/29/2016)
2016-02-012REQUEST FOR SUMMONS TO ISSUE filed by THE CORNUCOPIA INSTITUTE.(Stotter, Daniel) (Entered: 02/01/2016)
2016-02-023SUMMONS (3) Issued Electronically as to UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE, U.S. Attorney and U.S. Attorney General (znmw) (Entered: 02/02/2016)
2016-03-024NOTICE of Appearance by Jason Todd Cohen on behalf of UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE (Cohen, Jason) (Entered: 03/02/2016)
2016-03-235Consent MOTION for Extension of Time to File Answer re 1 Complaint by UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE (Attachments: # 1 Proposed Order)(Cohen, Jason) (Entered: 03/23/2016)
2016-03-23MINUTE ORDER granting 5 Defendant's Consent Motion for Extension of Time: It is hereby ORDERED that Defendant shall answer or otherwise respond to 1 the Complaint on or before April 25, 2016. SO ORDERED. Signed by Judge Rudolph Contreras on 3/23/2016. (lcrc1) (Entered: 03/23/2016)
2016-03-29Set/Reset Deadlines: Answer due by 4/25/2016, (tj) (Entered: 03/29/2016)
2016-04-256ANSWER to Complaint by UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE.(Cohen, Jason) (Entered: 04/25/2016)
2016-04-26MINUTE ORDER: It is hereby ORDERED that the parties shall meet, confer, and submit a proposed briefing schedule on or before May 10, 2016. SO ORDERED. Signed by Judge Rudolph Contreras on 4/26/2016. (lcrc1) (Entered: 04/26/2016)
2016-05-097Consent MOTION for Extension of Time to Submit a Proposed Briefing Schedule by UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE (Attachments: # 1 Proposed Order)(Cohen, Jason) (Entered: 05/09/2016)
2016-05-09MINUTE ORDER granting 7 Defendant's Consent Motion for Extension of Time: It is hereby ORDERED that the parties shall meet, confer, and submit a proposed briefing schedule on or before May 24, 2016. SO ORDERED. Signed by Judge Rudolph Contreras on 5/9/2016. (lcrc1) (Entered: 05/09/2016)
2016-05-248Joint STATUS REPORT by UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE. (Cohen, Jason) (Entered: 05/24/2016)
2016-05-25SCHEDULING MINUTE ORDER: It is hereby ORDERED that the parties shall appear before the Court for a status conference at 2:00 PM on June 1, 2016, in Courtroom 14. Plaintiff's counsel may appear by telephone. SO ORDERED. Signed by Judge Rudolph Contreras on 5/25/2016. (lcrc1) (Entered: 05/25/2016)
2016-05-25Set/Reset Hearings: Status Conference set for 6/1/2016 at 02:00 PM in Courtroom 14 before Judge Rudolph Contreras. (tj) (Entered: 05/25/2016)
2016-06-01Minute Entry for proceedings held before Judge Rudolph Contreras: Status Conference held on 6/1/2016. Order to be issued by the court. (Court Reporter: Patricia Kaneshiro Miller.) (tj) (Entered: 06/01/2016)
2016-06-01SCHEDULING MINUTE ORDER: Upon consideration of 8 the parties' joint status report and the status conference before the Court held today, it is hereby ORDERED that Defendant shall review and produce responsive documents on a rolling basis beginning on or before July 1, 2016, with all production to be completed on or before November 1, 2016. It is FURTHER ORDERED that Defendant shall make five productions of no less than 800 responsive documents, which shall occur (1) on or before July 1, 2016; (2) on or before August 1, 2016; (3) on or before September 1, 2016; (4) on or before September 30, 2016; and (5) on or before November 1, 2016. It is FURTHER ORDERED that, on or before November 15, 2016, the parties shall submit another joint status report updating the Court about their discussions and, if necessary, proposing a briefing schedule. SO ORDERED. Signed by Judge Rudolph Contreras on 6/1/2016. (lcrc1) (Entered: 06/01/2016)
2016-06-029NOTICE of Appearance by C. Peter Sorenson on behalf of CORNUCOPIA INSTITUTE (Sorenson, C.) (Entered: 06/02/2016)
2016-06-02Set/Reset Deadlines: Status Report due by 11/15/2016 (tj) (Entered: 06/02/2016)
2016-10-2810Consent MOTION to Modify Scheduling Order by UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE (Attachments: # 1 Proposed Order)(Cohen, Jason) (Entered: 10/28/2016)
2016-10-28MINUTE ORDER: Upon consideration of 10 Defendant's Consent Motion to Modify Scheduling Order, it is hereby ORDERED that 10 Defendant's Motion is GRANTED. It is FURTHER ORDERED that Defendant shall complete all production of responsive documents by November 15, 2016. It is FURTHER ORDERED that the parties shall submit a joint status report by 12/16/16, updating the Court about their discussions and, if necessary, proposing a briefing schedule. (So Ordered Judge Rudolph Contreras on 10/28/2016). (lcrc2) (Entered: 10/28/2016)
2016-12-1411Joint STATUS REPORT and Proposed Schedule by UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE. (Cohen, Jason) (Entered: 12/14/2016)
2016-12-1412MINUTE ORDER: Upon consideration of 11 the parties' Joint Status Report and Proposed Schedule, it is hereby ORDERED that 11 the Proposed Schedule is ADOPTED. It is FURTHER ORDERED that Defendant shall file its motion for summary judgment by March 17, 2017; Plaintiff shall file its opposition and cross-motion for summary judgment by April 4, 2017; Defendant shall file its reply to Plaintiff's opposition and opposition to Plaintiff's cross-motion for summary judgment by May 15, 2017; Plaintiff shall file its reply to Defendant's opposition by June 12, 2017. SO ORDERED. Signed by Judge Rudolph Contreras on 12/14/2016. (lcrc2) (Entered: 12/14/2016)
2016-12-28Set/Reset Deadlines: Cross Motions due by 4/4/2017. Response to Cross Motions due by 5/15/2017. Reply to Cross Motions due by 6/12/2017. Summary Judgment motions due by 3/17/2017. Response to Motion for Summary Judgment due by 4/4/2017. Reply to Motion for Summary Judgment due by 5/15/2017. (tj) (Entered: 12/28/2016)
2017-02-2413Consent MOTION for Extension of Time to File Motion for Summary Judgment by UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE (Attachments: # 1 Proposed Order)(Cohen, Jason) (Entered: 02/24/2017)
2017-02-24MINUTE ORDER granting 13 Consent Motion for Extension of Time: It is hereby ORDERED that Defendant shall file its motion for summary judgment by May 16, 2017; Plaintiff shall file its opposition and cross-motion for summary judgment by June 6, 2017; Defendant shall file its reply to Plaintiff's opposition and opposition to Plaintiff's cross-motion by July 14, 2017; Plaintiff shall file its reply to Defendant's opposition by August 18, 2017. SO ORDERED. Signed by Judge Rudolph Contreras on 2/24/2017. (lcrc2) (Entered: 02/24/2017)
2017-04-2614Second MOTION for Extension of Time to File Motion for Summary Judgment by UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE (Attachments: # 1 Proposed Order)(Cohen, Jason) (Entered: 04/26/2017)
2017-04-2715Memorandum in opposition to re 14 Second MOTION for Extension of Time to File Motion for Summary Judgment filed by CORNUCOPIA INSTITUTE. (Stotter, Daniel) (Entered: 04/27/2017)
2017-05-0816ORDER granting in part and denying in part 14 Defendant's Motion for Extension of Time. See document for details. Signed by Judge Rudolph Contreras on 5/8/2017. (lcrc2) (Entered: 05/08/2017)
2017-06-2317STRICKEN PURSUANT TO 26 ORDER FILED 12/27/2017.....MOTION for Summary Judgment by UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE (Attachments: # 1 Exhibit 1, Decl. of Matthew Michael, # 2 Exhibit 2, Decl. of Gregory Bridges, # 3 Exhibit 3, Decl. of Lynnea Schurkamp, # 4 Exhibit 4, Decl. of Juan S. Velez, # 5 Exhibit 5, Decl. of Brian Boehning, # 6 Exhibit 6, Decl. of Donald De Jong)(Cohen, Jason) Modified on 1/2/2018 (zrdj). (Entered: 06/23/2017)
2017-07-2918Consent MOTION for Extension of Time to File Plaintiff's Opposition To Defendant's Motion for Summary Judgment, And To Modify Briefing Schedule by CORNUCOPIA INSTITUTE (Attachments: # 1 Text of Proposed Order)(Stotter, Daniel) (Entered: 07/29/2017)
2017-07-31MINUTE ORDER granting 18 Plaintiff's Consent Motion for Extension of Time: It is hereby ORDERED that the following schedule shall govern further summary judgment briefing: Plaintiff shall file its opposition to Defendant's Motion for Summary Judgment and Cross-Motion for Summary Judgment by September 8, 2017; Defendant shall file its Reply to Plaintiff's Opposition and Opposition to Plaintiff's Cross-Motion by October 20, 2017; Plaintiff shall file its Reply in support of its Motion for Summary Judgment by November 3, 2017. SO ORDERED. Signed by Judge Rudolph Contreras on 7/31/2017. (lcrc2) (Entered: 07/31/2017)
2017-08-09Set/Reset Deadlines: Cross Motions due by 9/8/2017. Response to Cross Motions due by 10/20/2017. Reply to Cross Motions due by 11/3/2017. Response to Motion for Summary Judgment due by 9/8/2017. Reply to Motion for Summary Judgment due by 10/20/2017. (tj) (Entered: 08/09/2017)
2017-09-0819STRICKEN PURSUANT TO 26 ORDER FILED 12/27/2017.....RESPONSE re 17 MOTION for Summary Judgment filed by CORNUCOPIA INSTITUTE. (Attachments: # 1 Statement of Facts, # 2 Text of Proposed Order)(Stotter, Daniel) Modified on 1/2/2018 (zrdj). (Entered: 09/08/2017)
2017-09-0820STRICKEN PURSUANT TO 26 ORDER FILED 12/27/2017.....MOTION for Summary Judgment & Memorandum of Points & Authorities by CORNUCOPIA INSTITUTE (Attachments: # 1 Memorandum in Support, # 2 Statement of Facts, # 3 Text of Proposed Order)(Stotter, Daniel) Modified on 1/2/2018 (zrdj). (Entered: 09/08/2017)
2017-10-1121Consent MOTION for Extension of Time to File Response/Reply as to 17 MOTION for Summary Judgment , 20 MOTION for Summary Judgment & Memorandum of Points & Authorities by UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE (Attachments: # 1 Proposed Order)(Cohen, Jason) (Entered: 10/11/2017)
2017-10-11MINUTE ORDER granting 21 Defendant's Consent Motion for Extension of Time: It is hereby ORDERED that the following schedule shall govern further summary judgment briefing: Defendant shall file its reply in support of its motion for summary judgment and opposition to Plaintiff's cross-motion for summary judgment by November 20, 2017; and Plaintiff shall file its reply in support of its motion for summary judgment by December 18, 2017. SO ORDERED. Signed by Judge Rudolph Contreras on October 11, 2017. (lcrc2) (Entered: 10/11/2017)
2017-10-24Set/Reset Deadlines: Response to Cross Motions due by 11/20/2017. Reply to Cross Motions due by 12/18/2017. Reply to Motion for Summary Judgment due by 11/20/2017. (tj) (Entered: 10/24/2017)
2017-11-2022STRICKEN PURSUANT TO 26 ORDER FILED 12/27/2017.....REPLY to opposition to motion re 17 MOTION for Summary Judgment and Opposition to Plaintiff's Cross-Motion for Summary Judgment filed by UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE. (Attachments: # 1 Supplemental Statement of Undisputed Material Facts, # 2 Declaration Second Declaration of Gregory Bridges, # 3 Attachment 1 to Second Bridges Decl. - Oct. 30, 2017, Response Ltr., # 4 Attachment 2 to Second Bridges Decl. - Supplemental Vaughn Index)(Cohen, Jason) Modified on 1/2/2018 (zrdj). (Entered: 11/20/2017)
2017-11-2023STRICKEN PURSUANT TO 26 ORDER FILED 12/27/2017.....Memorandum in opposition to re 20 MOTION for Summary Judgment & Memorandum of Points & Authorities (duplicate of ECF No. 22) filed by UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE. (Attachments: # 1 Supplemental Statement of Facts, # 2 Second Declaration of Gregory Bridges, # 3 Attachment 1 to Second Bridges Decl. - Oct. 30, 2017, Response Ltr., # 4 Attachment 2 to Second Bridges Decl. - Supplemental Vaughn Index)(Cohen, Jason) Modified on 1/2/2018 (zrdj). (Entered: 11/20/2017)
2017-12-1424Consent MOTION for Extension of Time to File Response/Reply as to 20 MOTION for Summary Judgment & Memorandum of Points & Authorities by CORNUCOPIA INSTITUTE (Attachments: # 1 Text of Proposed Order)(Stotter, Daniel) (Entered: 12/14/2017)
2017-12-14MINUTE ORDER granting 24 Unopposed Motion for Extension of Time: It is hereby ORDERED that Plaintiff shall have up to and including December 22, 2017, to submit its reply in support of its motion for summary judgment. SO ORDERED. Signed by Judge Rudolph Contreras on December 14, 2017. (lcrc2) (Entered: 12/14/2017)
2017-12-15Set/Reset Deadlines: Reply to Motion for Summary Judgment due by 12/22/2017. (tj) (Entered: 12/15/2017)
2017-12-2025Consent MOTION to Modify Briefing Schedule and Strike Dkt. 19, Dkt. 20 & Dkt 23 by CORNUCOPIA INSTITUTE (Attachments: # 1 Text of Proposed Order)(Stotter, Daniel) (Entered: 12/20/2017)
2017-12-2726ORDER granting 25 Plaintiff's Consent Motion to Modify Briefing Schedule and to Strike Prior Filings. See document for details. Signed by Judge Rudolph Contreras on December 27, 2017. (lcrc2) (Entered: 12/27/2017)
2017-12-27Set/Reset Deadlines: Cross Motions due by 2/2/2018. Response to Cross Motions due by 3/16/2018. Reply to Cross Motions due by 4/18/2018. Summary Judgment motions due by 1/5/2018. Response to Motion for Summary Judgment due by 2/2/2018. Reply to Motion for Summary Judgment due by 3/16/2018. (tj) (Entered: 12/27/2017)
2018-01-0827Unopposed MOTION for Extension of Time to Refile Motion for Summary Judgment by UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE (Attachments: # 1 Text of Proposed Order)(Cohen, Jason) (Entered: 01/08/2018)
2018-01-0828MOTION for Summary Judgment (Refiled) by UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE (Attachments: # 1 Exhibit 1 Decl. of Matthew Michael, # 2 Exhibit 2 Decl. of Gregory Bridges, # 3 Exhibit 3 Decl. of Lynnea Schurkamp, # 4 Exhibit 4 Decl. of Juan S. Velez, # 5 Exhibit 5 Decl. of Brian Boehning, # 6 Exhibit 6 Decl. of Donald De Jong, # 7 Exhibit 7 Second Decl. of Gregory Bridges)(Cohen, Jason) (Entered: 01/08/2018)
2018-01-08Upon consideration of 27 Defendant's Unopposed Motion for Extension of Time to Refile Motion for Summary Judgment, it is hereby ORDERED that Defendant's motion is GRANTED. The deadline for Defendant to refile its motion for summary judgment is extended nunc pro tunc to January 8, 2018. SO ORDERED. Signed by Judge Rudolph Contreras on January 8, 2018. (lcrc2) (Entered: 01/08/2018)
2018-02-0229MOTION for Summary Judgment & Memorandum of Points & Authorities by CORNUCOPIA INSTITUTE (Attachments: # 1 Statement of Facts, # 2 Text of Proposed Order)(Stotter, Daniel) (Entered: 02/02/2018)
2018-02-0230RESPONSE re 28 MOTION for Summary Judgment (Refiled) filed by CORNUCOPIA INSTITUTE. (Attachments: # 1 Statement of Facts, # 2 Text of Proposed Order)(Stotter, Daniel) (Entered: 02/02/2018)
2018-03-1631REPLY to opposition to motion re 28 MOTION for Summary Judgment (Refiled) filed by UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE. (Attachments: # 1 Third Declaration of Gregory Bridges signed March 16, 2018, with Attachments, # 2 Second Declaration of Matthew Michael signed March 15, 2018, # 3 Exhibit 1 - AMS01096-1113 (Redacted), # 4 Exhibit 2 - AMS03476-3487 (Redacted), # 5 Exhibit 3 - AMS03192-3197 (Redacted), # 6 Exhibit 4 - AMS03912-3918 (Redacted))(Cohen, Jason) (Entered: 03/16/2018)
2018-03-1632Memorandum in opposition to re 29 MOTION for Summary Judgment & Memorandum of Points & Authorities (Duplicate of ECF No. 31; all attachments and exhibits filed with ECF No. 31) filed by UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE. (Cohen, Jason) (Entered: 03/16/2018)
2018-04-1833REPLY to opposition to motion re 29 MOTION for Summary Judgment & Memorandum of Points & Authorities filed by CORNUCOPIA INSTITUTE. (Stotter, Daniel) (Entered: 04/18/2018)
2018-05-0134MOTION for Leave to File Surreply by UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE (Attachments: # 1 Text of Proposed Order, # 2 Defendant's Supplemental Reply to Plaintiff's Reply, # 3 Exhibits 1-3 to Defendant's Supplemental Reply)(Cohen, Jason) (Entered: 05/01/2018)
2018-05-02MINUTE ORDER granting 34 Defendant's Motion for Leave to File Surreply: Defendant's Supplemental Reply to Plaintiff's Reply in Support of Plaintiff's Renewed Motion for Summary Judgment [34-2] is DEEMED FILED. SO ORDERED. Signed by Judge Rudolph Contreras on May 2, 2018. (lcrc2) (Entered: 05/02/2018)
2018-05-0235SURREPLY to re 29 MOTION for Summary Judgment & Memorandum of Points & Authorities filed by UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE. (Attachments: # 1 Exhibit)(jf) (Entered: 05/02/2018)
2018-05-1736NOTICE OF SUPPLEMENTAL AUTHORITY by UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE (Attachments: # 1 Cornucopia v. AMS, Civ. A. No. 16-866 (TNM) (D.D.C. May 14, 2018), ECF No. 31)(Cohen, Jason) (Entered: 05/17/2018)
2018-05-2237NOTICE OF SUPPLEMENTAL AUTHORITY by CORNUCOPIA INSTITUTE (Stotter, Daniel) (Entered: 05/22/2018)
2018-09-2738ORDER granting in part and denying in part 28 Defendant's Motion for Summary Judgment; granting in part and denying in part 29 Plaintiff's Motion for Summary Judgment. See document for details. Signed by Judge Rudolph Contreras on 9/27/18. (lcrc1) (Entered: 09/27/2018)
2018-09-2739MEMORANDUM OPINION granting in part and denying in part 28 Defendant's Motion for Summary Judgment; granting in part and denying in part 29 Plaintiff's Motion for Summary Judgment. See document for details. Signed by Judge Rudolph Contreras on 9/27/18. (lcrc1) (Entered: 09/27/2018)
2018-10-1140Consent MOTION to Stay per LCvR 54.2(a) by CORNUCOPIA INSTITUTE (Attachments: # 1 Text of Proposed Order)(Stotter, Daniel) (Entered: 10/11/2018)
2018-10-11MINUTE ORDER granting in part 40 Motion to Stay: Interpreting Plaintiff's motion as a motion for extension of time to file its petition for fees and costs, it is hereby ORDERED that the motion is granted. Plaintiff shall file its petition for fees and costs on or before December 6, 2018. Because the Court has already issued a final order, it is unnecessary to stay this action. SO ORDERED. Signed by Judge Rudolph Contreras on 10/11/2018. (lcrc2) (Entered: 10/11/2018)
2018-10-15Set/Reset Deadlines: Petition for fees and costs due by 12/6/2018. (tj) (Entered: 10/15/2018)
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