Those suing Carnival Cruise Lines over the impact its ship has on Charleston's historic district have asked the state Supreme Court not to step in before a lower court hears the case.
In June, downtown neighborhood, preservation and environmental groups sued Carnival, alleging that the Fantasy, which is homeported in Charleston, poses a nuisance and violates city zoning ordinances and state health laws.
In July, the city of Charleston and State Ports Authority intervened in the lawsuit on Carnival's behalf and later asked the Supreme Court to accept the case in its original jurisdiction -- essentially seeking to bypass all lower courts.
The plaintiff groups, represented by lawyer Blan Holman of the Southern Environmental Law Center, filed a brief this week asking the court not to interfere and to let a trial court sort out the issue.
"This matter is similar to zoning and nuisance cases filed in South Carolina trial courts every year," the filing said.
The city and Ports Authority also have asked the Supreme Court to consider dismissing the case, and this week's filing -- which adds up to more than 60 pages -- also gives the court arguments why it should not.
It's unclear when the Supreme Court will make a decision.
Earlier this year, the State Ports Authority also asked the Supreme Court to take original jurisdiction in the legal dispute over its memorandum of understanding regarding rail service in North Charleston. About two months later, the court declined.
Some said a proposed cruise ship ordinance -- drafted by the Historic Charleston Foundation -- could have settled the lawsuit, but Charleston City Council declined to vote on it last month.