Charleston, SC ports intervene in cruise lawsuit

CHARLESTON, SC (AP) - - A judge has granted the city of Charleston and the South Carolina State Ports Authority the ability to support Carnival Cruise Lines in a lawsuit brought against the company by residents and environmental groups.

The permission was granted late last week by Judge Kristi Lea Harrington.

A lawsuit filed earlier this year alleges Carnival's cruise liners are a public nuisance and violate city rules and regulations. The lawsuit also asks a judge to declare it illegal for the State Ports Authority to use Union Pier for a new $35 million passenger cruise terminal.

Ports Authority spokesman Byron Miller said in a statement Monday that the lawsuit is baseless.

Last year, Carnival began basing its Carnival Fantasy in Charleston, inaugurating a year-round cruising season in the city.

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