Back in court Thursday and communicating via phone, lawyers from Mammoth Community Water District and the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power. A new judge will take over the case, and attorneys will discuss moving ahead.
Mammoth Water District Manager Greg Norby confirmed that a status conference was set for Thursday in Mammoth Court. The Judicial Council had assigned Judge Garbolino to handle this case. DWP tried to get the venue of the hearings changed to Fresno but then agreed to allow a neutral judge hear the cases in Mono County.
Norby said that he understands that the topic for today’s court appearance is the state of the administrative records for both lawsuits – one suit over the Mammoth Creek EIR and the other attacking Mammoth’s Urban Water Management Plan. Both cases allege Mammoth has no rights to Mammoth Creek water and that Los Angeles does hold those rights.
Norby said once the administrative records are submitted, it will be roughly four to six months before an actual hearing by the judge. According to Norby, the Mammoth Water Board met for over three hours Monday in a closed session to discuss the lawsuits. Norby said that the District expects to request a follow up negotiation meeting with DWP.
Norby also said that on Tuesday the Energy and Environment Committee of the LA City Council also requested a closed session discussion with the full Council on the Mammoth lawsuits. DWP General Manager Ron Nichols attended that closed session.
Mammoth has pressed legislators and other officials to send letters to the LA City Council and DWP Commission urging settlement of these suits.