Oakland News Now – Howard Terminal Ballpark Project EIR Gavin Newsom Fast Track Beats PMSA In Court – video made by the YouTube channel in the video’s upper left hand corner.
Howard Terminal Ballpark Project EIR Gavin Newsom Fast Track Beats PMSA In Court, Oakland A’s Win
The Howard Terminal Ballpark Project and the Oakland A’s scored another major court win today, when the First Appellate Court District One came to a ruling as explained below.
In March 2020, Pacific Merchant Shipping Association, Harbor Trucking Association, California Trucking Association, and Schnitzer Steel Industries, Inc. (collectively, petitioners) filed the instant action challenging the authority of Governor Gavin Newsom to certify the project for streamlined environmental review. Today, the court just announced its decision which is here.
The heart of the court outcome is here:
However, from a practical point of view, we find it difficult to believe that the author of Assembly Bill 734— having gotten the special legislation he sought and being cognizant of the 2025 deadline granted by the Legislature for the Inglewood Project—would 30 not have included an express deadline in section 21168.6.7 if he believed the Assembly Bill 900 deadlines to be binding on the Howard Terminal project, essentially making expedited environmental review of the project infeasible. The author stated that the Howard Terminal Project needed a 2024 deadline, “which the special legislation would address.” (Sen. Judiciary Com. Analysis at p. 11.) Respondents argue that Assembly Bill 734 did address this issue by deliberately omitting any deadlines from the statutory text. 12 We find this argument more persuasive than petitioners’ contention that the Legislature rejected the author’s proposed extension of the deadlines by making reference to the Guidelines.
For these reasons, we conclude that the “more reasonable” interpretation of subdivision (e)(2) is that the deadlines mentioned in the Guidelines were not incorporated into section 21168.6.7 because they were not applicable to the Howard Terminal Project. Rather, pursuant to its express language, there are no deadlines in the special statute, for certification by the Governor or otherwise. We therefore agree with the trial court that the Governor was authorized to certify the project on February 11, 2021.
PMSA Lawyer Mike Jacob wrote to me that he is…
Obviously disappointed with the outcome. Working on a formal statement.
UPDATE: Here’s the PMSA Statement:
“We are disappointed with the decision to allow fast-tracked environmental review of the A’s proposed real estate development and stadium project at Howard Terminal. This ruling was issued despite the fact that the A’s clearly failed to meet the generous deadline set forth by the Legislature because the A’s struggled for months to provide evidence that their project would meet the minimum environmental requirements written in the law.
From the beginning, the A’s have used their power and influence to try and create special processes for themselves that bypass the rules and flout deadlines that are vital to the protection of the waterfront. These special-interest measures short-cut the protections of our community and the environment as well as our economy; that is why local environmental leaders such as Save the Bay and the Sierra Club have expressed serious concerns about the A’s project along with those of us who do business and work at the Port of Oakland.
Today’s ruling does not change the substantive standards that the A’s must meet under California’s environmental review statute. We continue to wait for the A’s to
demonstrate that this project will not cause irreparable environmental harm, generate tremendous traffic congestion, and impede commerce at the Port. The A’s have yet to prove how their massive residential and commercial real estate development is compatible with the working waterfront, on land and on sea.”
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