Ambassador Bridge Owner Likely to Challenge New Detroit River Bridge Permit

Tom Warne Report, 20 April 2013

Detroit Free Press – April 13, 2013

WASHINGTON – Gov. Rick Snyder and Canadian officials have announced that the New International Trade Crossing bridge over the Detroit River has received a presidential permit. The owner of Ambassador Bridge, Manual (Matty) Moroun has said his Detroit International Bridge Co. will file for emergency relief if the new span was given a permit. He is also expected to fight the acquisition of his land that is needed for the new bridge, even though Michigan law allows the state to use eminent domain to take land needed for projects and dispute the cost later in court.

Litigator Hamish Hume, who said Moroun would file for emergency relief, is already fighting a case in U.S. District Court in Washington saying the state’s process to get a presidential permit is flawed and unconstitutional. Hume claims the Ambassador Bridge has a “perpetual and exclusive franchise,” as authorized by acts of Congress and the Canadian Parliament in 1921. He said that a new international crossing violates the U.S. Constitution, according to court documents.

The actions Hume might take to stop the bridge permit include a possible temporary restraining order or another motion to freeze the permit until a federal judge has heard arguments.

This is a long, costly and sad story. In the end the government will win. In the end a new bridge will be built. TW

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