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Utah hopes to resolve inland port lawsuit by October

Posted at 8:57 AM, Jul 24, 2019

SALT LAKE CITY — In a new court filing, the state of Utah proposes to resolve Salt Lake City’s lawsuit within a few months.

The Utah Attorney General’s Office and the Inland Port Authority’s lawyers proposed a timeline of deadlines to litigate Salt Lake City’s lawsuit over the massive import/export center.

“It is in the interest of all parties, as well as the taxpayers of both the State and the City, to fully resolve the merits of the City’s claims expeditiously. Defendants’ proposed scheduling order would create a litigation schedule that would resolve the merits of the City’s claims by the end of October 2019, prior to the occurrence of any alleged damage to the City,” assistant Utah Attorney General Lance Sorenson wrote.

So far, Salt Lake City attorneys have not yet responded to whether they would agree to the timeline.

Mayor Jackie Biskupski has initiated a lawsuit against the state over the inland port, arguing that it usurps city taxing powers. Salt Lake City is seeking an injunction to block the port while the case is litigated.

The inland port has been billed as one of Utah’s biggest economic development projects. It would combine road, rail and air to bring goods and services in from overseas and distributed across the region. The port project has faced massive protests largely over environmental impacts to the Salt Lake Valley and wetlands near the Great Salt Lake.

Most of the candidates for Salt Lake City mayor running to replace Biskupksi have said they would continue her lawsuit against the state.