(Ed Note: OakTown works his magick again. I don't think we have to drown him in a lake to know he's a magician here. But it couldn't hurt to double check, I guess. Quick! To Lake Merritt!
Of course, besides Oaktown's analysis, we welcome any and all analyses of anything relating to the court case. Ragnarok and danzig were already disussing it and we look forward to further discussion.
Also, Ragnarok attended the non-event yesterday at the Courtroom. It was non-eventful. So, lot's of stuff going down on a lovely Friday. Czech it out.)
So, the UC filed its papers on Friday June 27 and I have to say, the filing kicks ass. It is very long and very in depth and requires a good chunk of time to sift through, but here is a summary.
UC did not just file a Proposed Order but filed the following:
1. Motion to Modify the Preliminary Injunction (to be heard July 22, 2008, with a motion for a short briefing schedule on this to be heard on July 1, 2008).
This Motion to Modify essentially argues that the reasons for the existence of the Prelim Injunction have disappeared and that now UC is suffering hardship from any continued ban on building the SAHPC. UC argues three reasons for dissolution of the Injunction: (1) material changes in the facts of the case; (2) major shift in the hardships being suffered by the parties; and (3) justice requires it.
Material changes: UC argues that Petitioner’s initially alleged all kinds of violations of law, but now that the Judge has heard the case and found those allegations to be without merit, there is no reason for the Injunction. SAHPC is in compliance with CEQA and with AP, and there is no reason for enjoining the building of SAHPC at this time. Also, the 3 alterations (grade beam, staircase, floor slabs) have been eliminated and will not be performed (in separate signed letters and declarations, the architects and engineers say they are not necessary to comply with law or safety issues and the Chancellor has approved these changes). Here’s a cool sentence from the Motion: “This Court has now ruled that neither CEQA nor any other law prohibits the University from removing trees to make room for the SAHPC.” In addition, the plan for increased events has been eliminated, so there is no need for further compliance with CEQA on this issue.
Shift in Hardships: Delay has cost UC $11 million in increased construction costs and $770,000 per month going forward. Security and police for the hippies = $729,000 to date and $22,000 per day. 350 students and 75 full time staff continue in unsafe buildings, plus 250 children in summer camps, all at risk in unsafe CMS buildings. Violent conduct of protesters is a public safety issue. Cal’s reputation built up over 125 years is at stake and ability to recruit top notch student athletes is at stake. “The trees on the SAHPC are not protected – and cannot be “saved” – by any law.” GREAT STUFF. The trees are “on the SAHPC.”
Ends of Justice: Petitioners argued for their day in court when asking for the injunction and they got it. Now they lost, so there’s no reason to keep the injunction.
2. Response to June 18 Order . . .
The University basically says: “OK we don’t agree with your June 18 order, but we’re going to comply with it. We have decided to eliminate the three “alterations” to the CMS (grade beam, staircase, floor slab) because these aren’t necessary to the project or to comply with any law. We’re also going to eliminate the increased events at CMS. These are the only two issues we lost on and now those two issues are moot.” There are a lot of docs related to this including declarations from the structural engineers, the lead architect, the CEQA compliance officer and the Chancellor, but they all explain the whys and hows related to eliminating these parts of the project to fully comply with the Judge’s order.
3. UC’s Proposed Judgment
This is really great lawyering here as the UC attorneys give the Judge 3 alternatives. To simplify/summarize these alternatives, they are (1) what the Plaintiff’s are asking for is denied except insofar as it relates to the increased events and related EIR analysis, and the 3 alterations discussed above (in which case SAHPC proceeds); (2) Alternative A: the UC’s Response and plans to eliminate the increased events and 3 alterations are in full compliance with the Judge’s decision, so there is no need to issue a “Writ of Mandate” directing that the University do anything (SAHPC proceeds) and the because UC won on 90% of its claims, it should be awarded 90% of its attorneys fees from all 3 Plaintiffs; (3) Alternative B: Court issues Writ of Mandate (Order) directing that UC comply with law relating to the 3 alterations (AP) and the increased events (CEQA) AND based on UC’s response of eliminating 3 alterations and the increased events, the Court finds there has been compliance with her order and the case is closed and Court orders Plaintiffs to pay attorney fees (and SAHPC proceeds).
4. Objections to Petitioners’ Proposed Order
Basically explains why the Petitioners Proposed order is lame and does not take into account that they lost on virtually all the issues.
In conclusion, UC is trying to get as quick a resolution as possible and is making an extremely strong case in favor of breaking ground on the SAHPC soon. It wishes to leave no doubt as to what the Judge is ordering and is essentially forcing the Judge (in a very persuasive way) to decide once and for all that the SAHPC must proceed. In comparing the Petitioner's Proposed Order to UC's, the difference in credibility and strength of argument is astounding. With that, I say "Good Night."