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Hermosa Beach Still Fighting 11-Year-Old Oil Drilling Proposal

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Hermosa Beach won a ruling last month from the Second District Court of Appeal, allowing them to have the “discretionary power” to deny oil-drilling permits, but they still stand a chance to lose in the end. At issue is a 1.3-acre property owned by Macpherson Oil Company, which wants build up to 30 oil drills and other related infrastructure. The court decision throws back the final decision to a jury, but finding that too risky, city officials are petitioning the California Supreme Court to end the battle. “This appeal seeks to end the oil company’s 11- year legal fight to strip away the most fundamental of a city’s rights and obligations - the right and obligation to protect the health and safety of its residents,” Mayor Michael DiVirgilio said today. If Hermosa loses, the oil drilling could proceed and the city could be liable for $700 million, 20 times the city budget.