Thanks to your efforts, we're making a really big difference in the fight for a healthy community this year.
W.A.T.E.R.’s two court cases continue to progress as we fight Crystal Geyser Water Company's potential operation. W.A.T.E.R. and the Winnemem Wintu Tribe are co-plaintiffs in the cases and we are working side by side to protect water, our communities and the environment.
The County case concerning the deficient Final EIR and lack of AB52 consultation was not settled out of court and will be heard in Siskiyou Superior Court in January 2019. We will keep you updated with the progress of this case. We are currently pouring over thousands of documents from the County, Crystal Geyser and Analytical Environmental Services disclosed in the preparation of the administrative record and through Public Record requests. The case against the City of Mt. Shasta is currently beginning mandated settlement discussions. We can’t say more about it due to the terms of confidentiality while in process. These two cases could potentially progress through the court system with approximately the same timing. We tried to combine the two lawsuits reducing strain on our court system and cost, but currently this has been rejected.
In a very promising development, the Winnemem Wintu have retained the Law firm of Fredericks, Peebles and Morgan, LLP to help in defending the Tribe’s rights under State law AB 52. Under AB 52, a project that may cause a substantial adverse change to a tribal cultural resource is defined as a project that may have a significant effect on the environment. Where a project may have a significant impact on a tribal cultural resource, the lead agency’s environmental document must discuss the impact and whether feasible alternatives or mitigation measures could avoid or substantially lessen the impact. The lawyers who helped craft the AB52 legislation are working directly with the Tribe and will be co-counsel with W.A.T.E.R.’s attorney, Marsha Burch.