Friday, March 21, 2008

Bear Insider: Final Arguments in Stadium Lawsuit

By Chris Avery

The March 20th final hearing at the Alameda County Superior Court in Hayward was not anti-climactic, it was non-climactic. There were no decisions, no Perry Mason moments. Instead observers mainly heard recaps of the expert testimony submitted by the two sides in previous weeks. Nevertheless, fascinating hints of future possibilities were heard.

The hearing began at 1 p.m. and ended at 3:30 p.m. with thanks from Judge Barbara Miller for the participation of all parties - and with her promise to publish a decision before the statutory limit of 90 days hence.  That fixes late June as an outer limit for a result; sources say a decision is expected within 30 days.

Those in attendance included Dan Mogulof (Cal Media Relations), Assistant Athletic Director Bob Milano (Capital Planning), and Ed Denton (Chief Building Official for the Berkeley campus).

Former Berkeley Mayor Shirley Dean was also there, seen to be nodding in agreement with plaintiffs' arguments. Neighborhood activist Doug Buchwald and "Ayr", a member of the ground support crew for the tree-sitters were there representing the oak grove protesters. The latter two have been frequently seen in the news reports about the yearlong protest.

On February 20th both sides filed expert testimony that addressed a specific topic the judge requested in her order of December 10th - whether the new athletics center would be structurally independent from the stadium or an upgrade to it.

Read the rest of the article here.


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