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Martinez v. United States

United States District Court, D. Nevada

May 22, 2014

DANIEL GABINO MARTINEZ, et al., Plaintiffs,
v.
THE UNITED STATES, Defendant.

ORDER

MIRANDA M. DU, District Judge.

I. SUMMARY

Before the Court is "Plaintiffs' Motion for Reconsideration of Minute Order in Chambers Doc. #17 and Doc #20" (dkt. no. 22), Defendant's Motion to Dismiss (dkt. no. 30), "Plaintiffs' Motion for Notice and Order to Show Cause Under Federal Rules of Criminal Procedure Rule 42(a)(1)(2)(3)" (dkt. no. 29), and "Plaintiffs' Amended Motion for Notice and Order to Show Cause Under Federal Rules of Criminal Procedure Rule 42(a)(1)(2)(3)" (dkt. no. 34). For the reasons set forth below, the Motion for Reconsideration is denied, the Motion to Dismiss is denied, and the motions for orders to show cause are denied.

II. BACKGROUND

Plaintiffs Daniel Gabino Martinez, Ramona Hage Morrison, and Dalton Warren Wilson, appearing pro se, allege that they filed a "grazing application" with the Bureau of Land Management ("BLM") on April 25, 2013, seeking a water-based allotment pursuant to the Taylor Grazing Act. ( See dkt. no. 1 ¶ 4.3.) Plaintiffs allege that as of the date they filed the Complaint, they had not received an answer to their "grazing application." ( See id. ) As a result, Plaintiffs ask this Court to review the agency's action and/or inaction and seek declaratory judgment and equitable relief. ( See id. at 1.)

Defendant claims that BLM responded to Plaintiffs' application on March 14, 2014. ( See dkt. no. 30 at 3.) The response identified several deficiencies in the materials that Plaintiffs submitted, including incomplete information and Plaintiffs' use of invalid BLM forms. ( See id. ) Defendant states that the response described what information was missing and provided the name and telephone number of the BLM employee who could be contacted with any questions about the application process. ( See id. at 4.)

III. MOTION FOR RECONSIDERATION

A. Legal Standard

Magistrate judges are authorized to resolve pretrial matters subject to district court review under a "clearly erroneous or contrary to law" standard. 28 U.S.C. § 636(b)(1)(A); see also Fed.R.Civ.P. 72(a); L.R. IB 3-1(a) ("A district judge may reconsider any pretrial matter referred to a magistrate judge in a civil or criminal case pursuant to LR IB 1-3, where it has been shown that the magistrate judge's ruling is clearly erroneous or contrary to law."). "This subsection would also enable the court to delegate some of the more administrative functions to a magistrate, such as... assistance in the preparation of plans to achieve prompt disposition of cases in the court." Gomez v. United States, 490 U.S. 858, 869 (1989). "A finding is clearly erroneous when although there is evidence to support it, the reviewing body on the entire evidence is left with the definite and firm conviction that a mistake has been committed." United States v. Ressam, 593 F.3d 1095, 1118 (9th Cir. 2010) (quotation omitted). A magistrate's pretrial order issued under 28 U.S.C. § 636(b)(1)(A) is not subject to de novo review, and the reviewing court "may not simply substitute its judgment for that of the deciding court." Grimes v. City & County of San Francisco, 951 F.2d 236, 241 (9th Cir. 1991).

B. Analysis

On January 13, 2014, Magistrate Judge Valerie P. Cooke granted Defendant's Motion to Strike Plaintiffs' Response to Defendant's Answer to the Complaint (dkt. no. 9) pursuant to Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 7. (Dkt. no. 17.) On January 16, 2014, Magistrate Judge Cooke denied Plaintiffs' motion to disqualify opposing counsel (dkt. no. 14). (Dkt. no. 20.) Plaintiffs' objection to both motions was timely filed. (Dkt. no. 22.)

After reviewing Magistrate Judge Cooke's Orders, Defendant's response to Plaintiffs' Motion (dkt. no. 24), and Plaintiffs' reply (dkt. no. 25), the Court determines that Judge Cooke's Orders (dkt. nos. 17, 20) were not clearly erroneous or contrary to law. Plaintiffs' Motion for Reconsideration is therefore denied.

IV. MOTION TO DISMISS

The United States argues that Plaintiffs' Complaint should be dismissed pursuant to Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 12(b)(6) as Plaintiffs have failed to state a viable claim for ...


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