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E-M:/ Novi Court Case Follow-Up



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Enviro-Mich message from Andrew Mutch <andrewimutch@yahoo.com>
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I just wanted to add some personal comments about the
Novi Parkland Case.  

First, we never would have even made it to Court
without Scott Howard of Olson and Bzdok, P.C. in
Traverse City.  Scott brought together all of the
evidence that our group had collected and made a
coherent legal argument out of it.  He then took on
two of the top lawyers in the state, Robert Carson,
representing the Sandstone developers, and Gerald
Fisher, representing the City of Novi, and their legal
teams and came out on top! The Judge's ruling from the
bench was essentially a restatement of Scott's closing
arguments. All the way along, Scott provided us with
invaluable advice not just about our legal case but
how to deal with the press as well as keeping our
spirits up when things weren't looking so promising. 
I also know that the lawyers and staff at Olson and
Bzdok, P.C. provided great support for Scott to help
counter the dollars and resources that were up agsinst
us.  

Second, I hope everyone out there realizes how
important this decision is for those of us who care
about preserving our environment, parks and open
spaces.  The Judge reaffirmed the State Law that
prohibits cities from selling parkland without a vote
of the people. But we are not out of the woods yet.
The Judge left the option open for the City to change
its Master Plan to avoid triggering the State Law.  If
a park can be lost just by a simple Master Plan
change, are there any parks in the state in any of our
cities that are truly protected?  We would welcome any
assistance from those of you who have fought these
battles before. We have won a victory but we haven't
won the war.  Your help could make a difference for
every community in Michigan. 

Here's some additional info. about the Novi Parkland
Case:

http://www.freep.com/news/locoak/nnovi12_20011212.htm

http://detnews.com/2001/oakland/0112/12/c04-364837.htm

http://novi.org/news.htm

Andrew Mutch
Friends of Novi Parks
http://www.friendsofnoviparks.org/

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