This mandate petition challenging the city’s 2015 resolutions approving an expansion of a Wal-Mart store on the ground it was inconsistent with the city’s general plan was barred by res judicata. The Sierra Club had brought an earlier suit challenging the city’s 2010 resolutions approving the Environmental Impact Report (EIR) and the project. The Sierra Club petition raised the same cause of action. While the EIR was revised as a result of the Sierra Club petition, nothing of substance changed with respect to conformity with the general plan. So the 2015 resolutions were not a new wrong and did not give rise to a new cause of action. Also, Atwell, though not a party to the Sierra Club petition, was in privity with the Sierra Club because both represented the public interest and raised issues of harm to the community. Atwell did not allege that the Sierra Club had not adequately represented the public interest in the prior suit.
California Court of Appeal, First District, Division 1 (Margulies, J.); September 18, 2018 (partial publication); 27 Cal. App. 5th 692