The Corps of Engineers plan for Lock and Dam isn’t something the Savannah Riverkeeper totally supports and the organization is planning to take its opposition to federal court.
“We do have issues with the Corp’s plan, we have the entire time we think there needs to be a compromise solution that meets the criteria of the upstream and the fish passage,” said Savannah Riverkeeper Tonya Bonitatibus.
The Riverkeeper’s plan was to join the city and South Carolina’s lawsuit against the Corps of Engineers plan, however in a closed door legal session city leaders deciding to object to the Riverkeeper joining up.
“Personally I don’t think we need to join with her to intervene because who would she intervene for, herself and the Savannah Riverkeepers,” said Commissioner John Clarke.
‘’We’re in this lawsuit with South Carolina, South Carolina has already made a decision we decided it was best to stick with South Carolina, the Riverkeeper seems to have been at odds through this entire process with Augusta so it didn’t make a whole lot of sense to join on our side,’’ said Commissioner Brandon Garrett.
‘’I think we are stronger together there has to be a compromise solution for this so I guess will have to see what the judge says,’’ says Bonitatibus.
Commissioners say their position is to keep the dam and the upstream pool, and not talk compromise.
That’s where we want to be that’s what we’re aiming for anybody who is advocating for something different I’m not sure why they should join us.’’ said Commissioner Garrett.
Both South Carolina and the city of Augusta can legally object to another party intervening in the lawsuit, however the final decision on whether the Riverkeeper is allowed to join will be up to a federal judge