Drakes Bay Oyster Co. Told by U.S. to Leave the Point Reyes Preserve
The Supreme Court on Monday turned away an appeal from a California oyster farm that has been ordered by the government to cease operations on federal land. Drakes Bay Oyster Co. had received an order in 2012 to shut down from then-Interior Secretary Ken Salazar after its 40-year contract with the federal Park Service expired at the end of November 2012. The farm's owner, Kevin Lunny, has continued his operation while appealing in federal court. But the high court's denial of the case likely spells the imminent closure of Drakes Bay Oyster Co., which produces about a third of California's oysters. The court specifically denied the farm's request to continue operating while a trial on the merits of the case proceeds. Now that the court has denied that appeal, the trial will proceed in the U.S. District Court in Oakland, Calif. Mr. Lunny said his business will continue its fight to stay open. "One thing that's given us strength to go on is that we see this fight as not really just for the oyster farm," Mr. Lunny said at a news conference Monday after the court's ruling. "If we see this kind of treatment to be allowed and not be stopped, we fear there could be consequences for all the ranchers on federal lands." Peter Prows, who represented Drakes Bay Oyster in the dispute, called the Supreme Court's decision "very disappointing." He said his team will be given 30 days to revise their complaint before the trial begins. "We'll be deciding in the next couple weeks exactly what happens, whether we push ahead with the case," Mr. Prows said. "In the meantime, we don't know what the government is going to do." Mr. Prows added that the farm will likely have to shutter its operations within a few days.Comment: Seems a shame .. sustainable food supply ... jobs ... a way of life ... oh well!