Hawaii Supreme Court invalidates lower court documents approving Thirty Meter Telescope

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The Hawaii Supreme Court on Tuesday officially vacated a 3rd Circuit Court order and judgment that had authorized the $1.4 billion Thirty Meter Telescope project on Mauna Kea, following the high court's decision in the case earlier this month.

Chief Justice Mark Recktenwald filed the court’s judgment on an appeal from the 3rd Circuit Tuesday afternoon. The case will be sent back to the circuit court, which will hand the matter over to the state Board of Land and Natural Resources for new contested case hearing.
The Hawaii Supreme Court on Tuesday officially vacated a former 3rd Circuit Court order and judgement that had authorized the $1.4 

The 3rd Circuit Court’s May 5, 2014, decision and order affirming the BLNR's decision granting a conservation district use permit for the Thirty Meter Telescope at the Mauna Kea Science Reserve on April 12, 2013, along with a final judgment filed on May 4, 2014, are now invalid.

The $1.4 billion observatory slated for the Big Island summit was stripped of its permit by the high court on Dec. 2.
Mauna Kea Anaina Hou, Clarence Ching, Flores-Case Ohana, Deborah Ward, Paul Neves, and KAHEA: The Hawaiian Environmental Alliance had sued the state BLNR and University of Hawaii at Hilo challenging the 2013 conservation district use permit.
The high court ruled earlier this month that the board had “acted improperly" when it issued the permit prior to holding a contest case hearing.
A new contested case hearing is to be held before the BLNR or before a new hearing officer.

Lorin Eleni Gill covers tourism, health care, nonprofits and the University of Hawaii for Pacific Business News.