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WEST VALLEY FOCUS

WOODLAND HILLS : Judge Urged to Lift Ban on Dirt Transfer

October 28, 1993|KURT PITZER

The attorney for the developer of the Warner Ridge housing project asked a judge Wednesday to lift a temporary ban on plans to move 425,000 cubic yards of dirt to the Pierce College farm.

Robert McMurry, who represents Warner Ridge Partners, said if the stay were lifted, the company would use no poisons to kill rodents on the land in preparation for the move.

Superior Court Judge Robert O'Brian postponed a decision on the matter until Thursday.

O'Brian on Monday temporarily blocked the project, which is scheduled to begin next week, at the request of local homeowners and environmentalists who have filed a lawsuit claiming that if the company uses poison, it might harm other wildlife. Hundreds of Canadian geese migrate to the Pierce farm each winter.

McMurry said the dirt removal must move forward quickly so that the partnership can meet contractual obligations.

McMurry's written request to the judge states that, if the court permits, the developer will find nontoxic ways to get rid of rodents on the Pierce land, "allowing work there to go forward with no issue as to poisons."

The developer also asked the judge to increase the amount of a $175,000 bond the Coalition to Save Pierce College Farm has been ordered to post in case it loses its suit against Warner Ridge.

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