Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Another Suit in the VA Controversy

The National Trust for Historic Preservation has filed suit in federal court here in New Orleans to stop the demolition in the VA footprint.  Judge Eldon Fallon of the Eastern District of Louisiana has been assigned the case.

The Trust's suit alleges a violation of NEPA, the National Environmental Policy Act.  Interestingly, The Trust filed a similar suit on seemingly the exact same grounds in federal court in Washington, D.C. back in the spring of 2009.

Dick Moe of the National Trust lays out a reasonable case for the new suit:

"We took this action because time is running out for the residents of Mid-City," said Richard Moe, president of the National Trust. "The acquisition process is moving forward swiftly, and it compels us to ask for an expedited response. We fear that if we waited for the agencies to proceed through the courts at a slower pace, the ongoing process of acquisition would make it much more difficult for the court to evaluate the legal issues objectively."

The acquisition process in indeed proceeding in the VA footprint.  Several properties have already been purchased by the state.  If the acquisitions aren't halted, the state will doubtless begin to argue soon that it has proceeded too far to turn back.

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