County Of Alameda Succumbs To Billboard Temporary Restraining Order

Castro Valley, June 23, 2014 – On Monday June 16 the County of Alameda agreed with the terms sought by Citizens for Free Speech (Citizens) in regard to a Temporary Restraining Order (TRO) regarding three 2-sided billboards along I-580 in Castro Valley. A Hearing was set to be heard in Federal Court June 17, but was canceled as a result of the stipulation.

The agreed-to stipulation includes a waiver of any requirement for Citizens to post a bond pending the ultimate court hearing, that the stipulation be filed and approved by the court, and that the County be subject to usual enforcement procedures and legal requirements of a TRO. This stipulation defers any legal action until late July when a hearing for Permanent Injunction against the County will be heard.

The stipulation followed the County’s request on Friday afternoon of an extension of time to file opposition papers. In verbal discussion between the parties’ counsel, the County asserted that they had never received notice of the Federal Court filing and therefore needed extra time for filing a response. Citizens’ counsel then joined the process server into the call whereupon County counsel acknowledged receipt. No extension was granted leading to the County’s submission Monday morning.

Michael Shaw, co-founder of Citizens and owner of Lockaway Storage where the billboards are located said, “After 12 years of litigation with Alameda County, the veracity of the County Council’s office is, in my mind, routinely questionable.”

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