By BRUCE SMITH
CHARLESTON, S.C. (AP) - The South Carolina State Ports Authority wants state regulators to allow a challenge to a cruise terminal permit to head directly to court.
The Department of Health and Environmental Control approved the permit last month allowing new pilings to be put under an old riverfront warehouse in Charleston for the new terminal. Opponents of the city's expanded cruise industry are appealing.
In a letter to the DHEC board Monday, Ports Authority attorneys say it appears opponents want the case before the state Administrative Law Court. The authority says it would save time if the DHEC board did not conduct a final review of the permit but allow the matter to head to the court as quickly as possible.
The issue is on the agenda for a DHEC board meeting Thursday.