Monday, March 16, 2009
Superferry website still taking reservations despite Supreme Court ruling that voids Act 2
by Larry Geller
As reported by both the Star-Bulletin and the Honolulu Advertiser, the Hawaii Supreme court today delivered a clear victory to ferry opponents who held that it should not sail without an environmental impact statement. The case now goes back to Circuit Court, where the ferry’s fate will be determined.
The court’s opinion is here (pdf, 113 pages). It determines that Act 2 was special legislation designed specifically for the one ferry company, and is therefore unconstitutional.
The opinion does not immediately stop the ferry, and the company’s website is still taking reservations. Should an injunction be issued, however, vacation plans based on ferry reservations could be shattered.
The Advertiser article reports that a statement from Hawaii Superferry will be given to the media later today. Both articles include activists’ statements on their victory. The Advertiser story quotes legislators as well. Perhaps there’s nothing yet from the Lingle administration, which wrote and pushed the legislation through a mostly willing and compliant state legislature.
Today’s ruling should put a new twist on Adm. Fargo’s planned talk to the Kauai Chamber of Commerce scheduled for Thursday.
It might also write a new chapter for the Superferry Chronicles. Or at least, they could put a gold sticker on freshly printed copies.
And there will probably be a few big parties on the Neighbor Islands tonight.