On Tuesday, Save The Hill Group notified the City of Livermore of its intention to file litigation against the City Council’s decision on April 22nd to certify an Environmental Impact Report (EIR).
The EIR was produced as part of the approval process for a housing development project, proposed by Lafferty Communities.
The 32-acre parcel is located in northeast Livermore between Laughlin Road and North Vasco Road, known as “Garaventa Hills". Save The Hill believes that this land is an integral part of the well-known biological systems that make up the protected “alkali sink” environment that envelops the property and its surrounding area. According to the citizens’ group, the proposed hydrological changes at the development site pose threats to the surrounding environment that aren't able to be mitigated.
A press release issued by Save The Hill notes that its existence as an undisturbed, natural feature is essential for the protection of several endangered species, such as the California Tiger Salamander and the Livermore Tarplant, to name a few.
“It is hard to believe the Livermore City Council actually certified the same EIR that we are reading through," states Bianca Covarelli, a representative of the Save the Hill Group.
"This land is undevelopable. The Council failed to consider a number of factors which make it incompatible with such a use, as our lawsuit will clearly describe.”
The group has worked for over 8 years to put a stop to the proposed housing development.
The effect of the filing will be to temporarily halt the EIR certification, as well as any further progress on the development until the legality of the April 22nd action is determined. The City will have 30 days to respond to the suit, followed by additional legal procedures.
The actual lawsuit will be filed this week. Greenfire Law, PC is representing the Group.
The group has started a Go Fund Me Page to raise money to save the hill and keep it as an open space in perpetuity. Go to https://www.gofundme.com/save-the-hill-fund for information.