SAN DIEGO (CNS) - The City Attorney's Office is poised to appeal a court ruling that overturned the city of San Diego's ban on people going onto the beach at the Children's Pool in La Jolla during harbor seal pupping season - Dec. 15 to May 15, a spokesman for the office said last week.
Orange County Superior Court Judge Frederick Horn ruled that neither the city nor the California Coastal Commission - which ratified the law as the overseer of the coastline - followed correct administrative procedures with the federal government in developing the ordinance.
Tuesday's ruling, in the case of Friends of the Children's Pool v. city of San Diego and the commission, handed a major victory to beach access advocates, who have long argued that the site's original use as a safe swimming area for youth should be maintained.
The ban was instituted two years ago after instances in which people harassed newborn seals and their mother, and was supported by animal welfare groups.
"The Orange County judge's decision was in error and went far beyond what even the lawyers briefed," said city attorney's spokesman Gerry Braun.
"His decision would require cities to get federal government permission before making land use decisions on the coast where seals congregate," Braun said. "That is not current law. We will urge the City Council to appeal."
Bryan Pease, who has represented animal welfare organizations during the years-long dispute, said he filed a request for a temporary restraining order in federal court to prevent the Horn's ruling from taking effect.
According to Pease, who is running for city attorney, the procedures cited by Horn don't apply to protective efforts like animal sanctuaries.
The Friends of the Children's Pool called for the city to take down barriers to public access immediately. From May to December, a rope barrier is kept up to discourage visitors from going near the seals.
The Children's Pool was deeded to the city in 1931, but the seals moved into the area in the 1990s - leading to the controversy.
According to Coastal Commission staff, water quality is poor in the area because of the seals, so it is not a good place for swimming, anyway. Several nearby beaches with better water quality can be used, some within walking distance, staff say.
Temperatures are expected to rise slightly on Sunday, according to the National Weather Service, but will remain cooler than normal.
A motorcyclist was suspected of drunken driving after causing a late-night car crash in Pacific Beach, police said Sunday, and hours later, a second crash occurred in the intersection while police were still investigating.
The San Diego County Planning Commission voted 6-1 last week to recommend that the County’s Board of Supervisors approve the County’s revised Climate Action Plan, with some modifications.
John Coleman, a long-serving San Diego weatherman and founder of The Weather Channel, has died at the age of 83.
Several dogs were taken into the custody of San Diego County and put down, after a Lomita woman reported that her six dogs were attacked and some killed by a group of pit bulls.
Thousands of people marched through downtown San Diego and San Marcos in the second annual Women's March Saturday. The San Diego event began at 10 a.m. at the downtown Waterfront Park on Pacific Highway, while the North County event began at 11 a.m. at Palomar College.
Thousands of people marched through downtown San Diego and San Marcos in the second annual Women's March Saturday. The San Diego event began at 10 a.m. at the downtown Waterfront Park on Pacific Highway, while the North County event began at 11 a.m. at Palomar College. The two marches were held in conjunction with other marches across the country.
The federal government shut down at the stroke of midnight Friday, which prompted the closure of many federal operations, such as national parks and monuments and that included the shutdown of Cabrillo National Monument.
A transient accused of fatally stabbing a man after they got into an argument near a 7-Eleven store in Poway pleaded not guilty Friday to a murder charge.