Friday, April 27, 2012

Environmental lawsuit to close Sharp Park stalled until at least October

A legal filing by environmental groups that are trying to shutter Sharp Park Golf Course in Pacifica hit a roadblock Thursday when a federal judge issued a stay on the lawsuit until October.

The golf course, which is owned by San Francisco but located in Pacifica, has been a hot topic for environmentalists for years. The Wild Equity Institute and other environmental groups claim that the golf course violates provisions of the Endangered Species Act by infringing on the habitats of the San Francisco Garter Snake and the California red-legged frog. The groups, which assert that water pumping and lawn mowers harm the endangered species, had hoped to shut down Sharp Park immediately.

However, on Thursday, U.S. District Judge Susan Illston denied those claims, ordering a stay on the lawsuit until the Fish and Wildlife Service completes a biological study of Sharp Park. If that study is not completed by October, however, the lawsuit can resume.

But the day wasn’t a total loss for environmentalists. The city of San Francisco requested the lawsuit be rejected, but Illston also issued a stay on that motion until October.

The golf course has also been a hot topic in San Francisco politics.

Posted by Steve Sinai

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