Quimbee logo
DMCA.com Protection Status
  • E
  • Escondido Mutual Water Co. v. La Jolla Band …Escondido Mutual Water Co. v. La Jolla Band of Mission Indians
From our private database of 16,800+ case briefs...

Escondido Mutual Water Co. v. La Jolla Band of Mission Indians

United States Supreme Court
466 U.S. 765 (1984)


Section 4(e) of the Federal Power Act (Act), 16 U.S.C. § 797(e), authorized the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) (defendant) to issue licenses for dams and other public works on public lands or reservations, subject to conditions imposed by agencies with jurisdiction over the land. Section 4(e) also required FERC to make a finding that each FERC-issued license would not interfere or be inconsistent with the purpose for which a reservation was created or acquired. The Act defined “reservations” as including tribal and non-tribal lands. Escondido Mutual Water Company (Escondido) (defendant) applied for a license for a hydropower plant located on or near American Indian reservations in Southern California. FERC issued the license without including conditions imposed by the secretary of the interior (secretary). According to FERC, section 4(e) did not require acceptance of the conditions without modification, and FERC’s no-interference-or-inconsistency finding applied only to reservations that were physically occupied by project facilities. The La Jolla Band of Mission Indians and other tribes (plaintiffs) petitioned for review of FERC’s decision to issue a license to Escondido without conditions. The court of appeals reversed FERC’s decision with respect to the secretary’s conditions. The court of appeals also found that “reservations” included water rights, and that FERC’s no-interference-or-inconsistency finding therefore applied to a licensed activity’s effect on tribal water rights. The United States Supreme Court granted certiorari to determine whether the Act’s legislative history or statutory scheme supported the court of appeals’ interpretation of the Act.

Rule of Law


Holding and Reasoning (White, J.)

What to do next…

  1. Unlock this case brief with a free (no-commitment) trial membership of Quimbee.

    You’ll be in good company: Quimbee is one of the most widely used and trusted sites for law students, serving more than 450,000 law students since 2011. Some law schools—such as Yale, Vanderbilt, Berkeley, and the University of Illinois—even subscribe directly to Quimbee for all their law students. Read our student testimonials.

  2. Learn more about Quimbee’s unique (and proven) approach to achieving great grades at law school.

    Quimbee is a company hell-bent on one thing: helping you get an “A” in every course you take in law school, so you can graduate at the top of your class and get a high-paying law job. We’re not just a study aid for law students; we’re the study aid for law students. Read more about Quimbee.

Here's why 450,000 law students have relied on our case briefs:

  • Written by law professors and practitioners, not other law students. 16,800 briefs, keyed to 224 casebooks. Top-notch customer support.
  • The right amount of information, includes the facts, issues, rule of law, holding and reasoning, and any concurrences and dissents.
  • Access in your classes, works on your mobile and tablet. Massive library of related video lessons and high quality multiple-choice questions.
  • Easy to use, uniform format for every case brief. Written in plain English, not in legalese. Our briefs summarize and simplify; they don’t just repeat the court’s language.

Questions & Answers

Have a question about this case?

Sign up for a free 7-day trial and ask it

Sign up for a FREE 7-day trial