Sat, May 17, 2003
Judge May Dismiss One Of Three Counts
We're still awaiting an outcome after a Cook County (IL) judge
Friday heard arguments from lawyers for the city of Chicago who
demand a lawsuit over the destruction of Meigs Field be thrown out
of court. The city's lawyers say the suit, filed April 4th, by the
Illinois Association of Air and Critical Care Transport, The Meigs
Coalition, Friends of Meigs Field and citizens Steven Whitney and
Rachel Goodstein should be quashed.
Meigs backers would most certainly disagree. They sued after
Mayor Richard Daley ordered the airport bulldozed in the dark of
night March 30th. They say Daley violated the state's open meetings
law and the public trust doctrine and have endangered the public by
destroying the only runway at Meigs.
Judge William Maki had earlier indicated he would probably throw
out of court one count that said the plaintiff's had the right to
sue Chicago because the state attorney had failed to prosecute
Daley for the midnight runway destruction.
Judge Maki did order a temporary restraining order against
further destruction of Meigs on the day the suit was filed. The
terminal is still standing, as are the hangars and the control
tower (although it's no longer manned by FAA controllers). That
order is still in effect.
The next step? If Judge Maki allows the lawsuit to continue,
lawyers for the backers of Meigs Field say they'll want to depose
Mayor Daley, as well as the Police Chief and the Fire Commissioner.
"We're outside the loop on what exactly happened here," said Steven
Novack, attorney for the plaintiffs, in an interview for www.chicagobusiness.com.
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