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Weyerhaeuser responds to lawsuit
To the Editor:
Your article in the Sept. 7 edition titled, "Homestead suit nears
court date," accurately reflected our policy of declining to comment on
pending litigation. Unfortunately, perhaps because we failed to join the Fioritos
in litigating our case in the press, your article includes substantial
inaccuracies. For the record:
In response to local public concern about landslides and
reclamation problems pertaining to the Fiorito Bros.' mine site, Weyerhaeuser
Company entered into a lease with Fiorito Bros. in 1992 to help them
reclaim their Homestead site. The Fioritos assured both Weyerhaeuser
Company and King County that the reclamation would be completed by 1999.
They have not fulfilled their obligation.
The term of the lease between Weyerhaeuser and Fiorito Bros.
expired on May 31, 1999. Weyerhaeuser offered to renew the lease if
Fiorito would complete reclamation within the next three years, but Fiorito Bros.
Despite the fact that the lease expired, Fiorito Bros. has refused to
vacate the premises and, in fact, has continued to operate on
Weyerhaeuser property and remove material from Weyerhaeuser's property.
Accordingly, following notice to Fiorito, Weyerhaeuser commenced an
unlawful detainer action against Fiorito Bros., which will be tried
beginning Sept. 18, 2000.
Weyerhaeuser has been advised that Fiorito Bros. has operated
without the required governmental permits, and that governmental
enforcement actions have been undertaken against Fiorito Bros. pertaining to their
Weyerhaeuser Company requires all its leasees to fully comply with
the law. Government regulations, and public expectations, pertaining
to gravel operations have changed considerably in recent
years. Weyerhaeuser has implemented measures to insure that all our lessees
operate within the applicable rules and regulations in the future.
Contrary to Fiorito Bros.' claims, the property previously leased
to Fiorito Bros. is not leased to Cadman Inc. and is not part of the
proposed North Bend Gravel Operation.
Thank you for providing the rest of the story.
Grant R. Newport
Manager, Weyerhaeuser Mineral Resources
(Editor's note: The Valley Record stands by the story, which
accurately depicted the Fioritos' concerns with the lawsuit. Since Weyerhauser
representatives would not comment, the Record was not able to publish
their remarks about the suit.)