The Bighorn sheep in the mountains above Palm Desert are both iconic and endangered. Over the years, the Bighorn Institute’s lambing pens helped to slowly raise the numbers of these sheep.
The Corniche at Bighorn luxury home development may be moving closer than the 400 yard buffer zone. When Palm Desert’s city council heard 30,000 cubic yards of dirt would be moved, they thought twice about letting construction continue.
Then, the developer threaten to sue and the council decided to let him go ahead. Now, it’s the Sierra Club’s turn to sue.
Joan Taylor with the Sierra Club said, “We don’t think it’s all or nothing. We think there are project alternatives that they should have looked harder at. Since they didn’t look at all and they they surely didn’t look at the threat this poses on the Bighorn.”
With lawsuits flying around Palm Desert, the city says it’s between the proverbial rock and a hard place.
City Attorney David Erwin said, “I think we’ve always thought there’s going to be litigation from one side or the other.”
Palm Desert taxpayers do not have to worry about the city budget getting bled dry by lawsuits.
“The city will not be spending any money defending the lawsuit. If the lawsuit is to be defended, it will be paid for by the developer,” said Erwin.