UPDATE as of 3/11/15: March 13 Committee of the Whole meeting is canceled. See press release: Friday GMO case update canceled, federal judge delays hearing
For immediate release: March 10, 2015
Press release by:
Council Vice-Chair Don S. Guzman, Chair
Committee of the Whole
Committee to receive an update on GMO litigation
WAILUKU, Hawaii – A status update on two cases relating to the ordinance proposed by initiative petition and passed by the voters at the last general election will be considered by the Committee of the Whole on Friday, March 13 at 9 a.m., Committee Chair Don S. Guzman announced today.
The terms of the ordinance require a temporary moratorium on the cultivation of genetically engineered organisms, or GMOs, in Maui County. Plaintiffs Robert Ito Farm, Inc., et al., and Defendant County of Maui stipulated to an injunction against any action to effect the ordinance until March 31.
At the federal court, GMO proponents, Robert Ito Farm, Inc., Hawaii Farm Bureau Federation, Maui County, Molokai Chamber of Commerce and Agrigenetics, Inc., are seeking a judicial declaration that the initiative petition ordinance is invalid. In the state court, GMO opponents, Alika Atay, Lorrin Pang, Mark Sheehan, Bonnie Marsh, Lei`ohu Ryder and the Shaka Movement are seeking a judicial declaration that it should be enforced and implemented. Alika Atay, et al., have also intervened in the federal action.
A Motion for Summary Judgment, filed by Robert Ito Farm, Inc., et al., is set for a hearing on March 31 at the federal courthouse in Honolulu.
Guzman said the committee will receive a summary of the legal proceedings to date and a clarification of questions regarding the county’s representation in the cases.
Testimony may be emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org, referencing COW-1(1).
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