NORTHWEST ASIAN WEEKLY
A California federal judge has denied a bid from a nonprofit group, representing descendants of Japanese Americans interned in camps during World War II, to temporarily bar the sale of a parcel of land.
The Tule Lake Committee wants to stop the city of Tulelake, Calif. from selling 358 acres to the Modoc Tribe of Oklahoma for $17,500, even though the committee itself had offered to buy the land for $40,000.
On Aug. 27, U.S. District Judge Kimberly J. Mueller denied without prejudice a motion for a temporary restraining order.
“The committee has not identified a single Modoc Tribe plan that poses a threat to the [Tule Lake Segregation Center], explained why concrete plans are not needed for the court to evaluate harm, or done more than speculate that the tribe is immune from [the California Environmental Quality Act] and all other regulations that govern its conduct,” Mueller said.
In its complaint, the Tule Lake Committee said, “By transferring away the historic site for no consideration or grossly inadequate consideration, by acting in secret in derogation of California law, by pre-deciding the recipient, and by ignoring or deliberately frustrating the committee’s interest, the city and the city council deprived the committee of its liberty interest without due process.”
The land, which has been used for decades as part of a local airport, was sold to the Modoc Tribe despite fraud claims against its online lending business, the committee said.
The Tule Lake Committee is looking for support from the legal community in submitting legal briefs advocating for the protection of the Tule Lake site.
The committee is developing a fund to help pay for continuing litigation-related expenses.
You can donate at tulelake.org, or send a check to the Tule Lake Committee, P.O. Box 179141, San Francisco, CA 94117.