The on-going controversy about whether or not to relocate the harbor seals from La Jolla's Children's Pool beach continued Tuesday as a judge took under submission a decision on whether San Diego should be immediately ordered to remove them.
Last month, Superior Court Judge Yuri Hoffman denied San Diego's request for extended time to comply with a 2005 ruling by Judge William Pate, who ordered the city to restore the area to its "pre-seal" condition within six months by removing sand buildup and cleaning up the water. Last month, Hoffman ordered the city to find out what permits are needed to comply with the order to start dredging.
In court on Tuesday, City Attorney Michael Aguirre informed Hoffman that Pate's 2005 ruling did not "expressly provide" for the removal of the seals from the Children's Pool area. Aguirre said that if the judge ordered the city to remove the seals right away, San Diego would have to have someone on location 24 hours a day to "shoo the seals away." Aguirre urged Hoffman to allow the city get all of its permits in place prior to moving the seals.
A 1931 state law granted the Children's Pool from the state to the city, provided it be used as a "bathing pool for children."
Another hearing on the seals is slated for Oct. 24.