“We’re not abandoning the claims that we have. The dismissal does not bar those claims,” he said.
The dismissal motion comes nearly two weeks after Ocmulgee Superior Courts Judge Stephen Bradley denied a stop-work motion. His ruling also cast doubts as to whether the plaintiffs would be able to find a legal avenue to stop the factory.
The lawsuit’s defendants included several Morgan County officials, the Joint Development Authority (JDA) of Jasper, Morgan, Newton and Walton Counties and the company it hired to begin grading work. The Georgia Department of Economic Development (GDEcD) also intervened in the case, arguing the excavation work was legal.
The JDA and GDEcD released a joint statement after Wednesday’s dismissal, saying the judge’s stop-work denial “made it clear that Plaintiff’s likelihood of success on any upcoming trial on zoning was not likely to succeed...”
Though grading work has been ongoing for months, a ceremonial groundbreaking has not been announced for the California-based startup’s factory. The EV plant is expected to create 7,500 jobs.
A note of disclosure
Cox Enterprises, owner of The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, also owns about a 4% stake in Rivian and supplies services to the company. Sandy Schwartz, a Cox executive who oversees the AJC, is on Rivian’s board of directors and holds stock personally. He does not take part in the AJC’s coverage of Rivian.