Victory for animal rights group after La Jolla Cove fireworks show canceled due to permit issue

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Fireworks over La Jolla. Photo courtesy of the City of San Diego

San Diego officials said on Wednesday they would not allow a scheduled July 4 fireworks display at La Jolla Cove due to a lack of required permits from event organizers , news that delighted an animal rights organization that took legal action to stop the show.

In May, the Animal Protection and Rescue League sued event organizers over the alleged adverse effects such a spectacle would have on the sea lions and their cubs gathered in the cove.

The case remains pending, and a lawyer representing the organization said it will continue to pursue litigation despite the show’s cancellation, in hopes of preventing similar events in the future.

“Whether or not the judge in our unfair trade practices case issues an injunction, those who organize the fireworks display must always obey all laws,” said Bryan Pease, lawyer for APRL. “If the judge signs the injunction, it will be another layer of protection and expose the show’s promoters to additional criminal penalties if they injure or disturb marine mammals, birds or other animals.”

According to the city, an application for a permit for the event was received too late, although a spokesperson for Mayor Todd Gloria’s office said the city could work with organizers on a possible alternative holiday celebration.

“City staff went out of their way to find a safe and legally sound path to organize the fireworks display despite the short delay. The city did not receive a permit application for the event until June 10, leaving insufficient time to process the necessary permits, including a coastal development permit, which requires 60 days notice and a public hearing. “, According to a statement from the city.

“The city is ready to work with applicants on alternative celebration ideas and today issued a park use permit for EB Scripps Park. While we know this is frustrating, the city must follow all applicable laws and regulations to protect residents and environmentally sensitive lands, ”the statement said.

– City News Service contributed to this article


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