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|Current Court Information:|
|United States District Court for the Eastern District of California|
|Appointed by:||George H.W. Bush|
|Active:||3/25/1991 - 5/31/2006|
|Senior:||5/31/2006 - 9/30/2011|
|Preceded by:||Milton Schwartz|
|Succeeded by:||Lawrence O'Neill|
|Bachelors:||University of Southern California, B.S., 1963|
|Law School:||University of California, Berkeley, Boalt Hall School of Law, LL.B., 1966|
|Military service:||U.S. Marine Corps, Reserves as a Sergeant 1960-1967|
Oliver Winston Wanger is a former federal district (Article III) judge for the United States District Court for the Eastern District of California. He joined the court in 1991 after being nominated by President George H.W. Bush. He retired on September 30, 2011. Judge Wagner has now taken a job as an attorney for the Westlands Water District.
Early life and education
A native Californian, Wanger graduated from the University of Southern California (USC) with his Bachelor's Degree in 1963 and later graduated from the University of California Boalt Hall School of Law with his law degree in 1966. Wanger also served in the US Marine Corps Reserves as a Sergeant from 1960 to 1967.
Wanger began his legal career as a Deputy District Attorney for Fresno County from 1967 to 1969 and also served as a Adjunct (part-time) professor at Humphrey College of Law from 1968 to 1969. Wanger entered into private practice as a private practice attorney licensed in the State of California from 1969 to 1991. Wanger also served as a adjunct professor for the San Joaquin College of Law based in Fresno from 1970 to 1991 with also serving three years as the Dean of the law school from 1980 to 1983. Wanger also served as the City attorney for the City of Mendota from 1975 to 1980 and also served in the Superior Court of California as a Reserve Judge for Fresno County in 1988 and also as a Pro tem settlement conference judge in 1989.
Eastern District of California
On the recommendation of U.S. Senator Pete Wilson, Wanger was nominated by President George Bush on January 8, 1991, to a seat vacated by Milton Schwartz as Schwartz resigned from Federal Judicial service. Wanger was confirmed by the U.S. Senate on March 21, 1991 on unanimous consent and received commission on March 25, 1991. Wanger assumed senior status on May 31, 2006. He then retired at age 70 on September 30, 2011. Wanger was succeeded in this position by Lawrence O'Neill.
Federal delta plan
On Tuesday, September 20, 2011, Judge Wanger ruled to invalidate several important parts of a federal plan to protect endangered Chinook salmon and Central Valley steelhead that use the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta for migration. This will mark the second time in three years that the plan, which aims to reduce pumping from the delta during certain times of year, has had to be rewritten. The plan, authored by the National Marine Fisheries Service, angered urban and rural citizens of the area who use the water pumped from the delta for agricultural, as well as, everyday household purposes. Opponents to the plan, members of the Westlands Water District, were pleased with the ruling, but environmentalists were not altogether crushed as they found hope in that Judge Wanger established as lawful the plan's statement that the fish species are in jeopardy.
Fresno Fire Department
On March 16, 2010, Judge Wanger denied a motion from the City of Fresno to grant a new trial over a gender discrimination suit in their fire department. This comes after a 2009 decision in which the court found the Fresno Fire Department liable in committing gender discrimination towards a female recruit in its training academy. The judge found that the City of Fresno did not have enough evidence to warrant a new trial.
California water pumping limits
Judge Wanger ruled on February 10, 2010 to deny a request by California farmers to lift a restriction on water pumping in the California delta on claims the limits are killing minnows. The restrictions on water pumping were put in place to protect smelt that swim downstream in the Pacific Ocean, but farmers have been opposed to the idea because the limits have caused millions of dollars in crop losses.
The ruling allows the restrictions to still be enforced by the federal government.
In 2007, Wanger ruled that state and federal water pumps that deliver about 6 million acre-feet of delta water to Kern County could eliminate the smelt, which is an endangered species. In order for the water pumping practices to be brought into compliance with the federal Endangered Species Act, Wanger ruled, the pumping had to be reduced by about one-third, to 4 million acre-feet of delta water. Following this decision, water contractors were told to expect 35% of their normal allocation of State Water Project water for 2008.
In April 2008, Wanger ruled that another federal permit was in violation of the Endangered Species Act with respect to salmon.
- Judge Wanger's Biography at the Federal Judicial Center
- Washington Examiner "Angry federal judge rips 'false testimony' of federal scientists", September 22, 2011
- ↑ Associated Press "Federal judge who ruled in water cases steps down," September 25, 2011
- ↑ Sacramento Bee "Ex-judge who ruled for Westlands is now its lawyer," November 30, 2011
- ↑ "THOMAS" Nomination of Oliver Wanger, February 12, 2009
- ↑ The Fresno Bee "Parts of Delta salmon plan invalidated in court," September 20, 2011
- ↑ KMJ NOW "Fire Dept. Discrimination Suit Upheld", March 17, 2010
- ↑ 6.0 6.1 6.2 San Jose Mercury-News "Judge:Pumping limits needed to protect Calif fish", February 10, 2010
- ↑ Aquafornia, "Where does Southern California's water come from?", April 29, 2008
- ↑ California Water v. Delta Smelt Fish, February 21, 2009
|Federal judicial offices|
|Eastern District of California
|Magistrate judges||Edmund Brennan • Greg Hollows • Dale A. Drozd • John Moulds • Craig Kellison • Gary Austin • Sandra Snyder • Stanley A. Boone • Allison Claire •|
|Former Article III judges|
|Former Chief judges|