Pike project litigants certified as a 'class' for lawsuit against the stateDiana Jorgenson
More than a year ago, citizens in eastern Plumas County filed a class action suit against the Department of Fish and Game regarding economic impacts from the agency's second poisoning of Lake Davis. Last week, Judge Janet Hilde, Superior Court of Plumas County, handed down a ruling to certify the petitioners as a class.
It is the first of several hurdles which the litigants and DFG must jump before the case can conclude.
"We think this decision is very favorable," said Steve Gross, attorney for the city of Portola, and co-counsel for the class action suit.
David Diepenbrock and G. David Robertson, co-counsel, appeared at a June 30 hearing on the case, requesting class action certification.
The court took the case under submission and Hilde granted their motion and certified the class in a 22-page ruling Aug. 12.
"Judge Hilde did a very good job in her ruling, very thorough," said Gross. "She took pains to cover all the arguments, which should make it less susceptible to appeal."
B.J. Pearson, who spearheaded the formation of the class action lawsuit, was equally pleased. "It's a big step forward."
The city of Portola, which is one of the plaintiffs, has included the new legal development on tonight's agenda for city council. Gross will be on hand and the subject will be up for discussion.