Florida vs. CDC cruise lawsuit: Mediation ends at an impasse

Coronavirus

TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) — Mediation in Florida’s lawsuit challenging the CDC’s authority over the cruise industry has ended in an impasse.

“Despite the party’s good faith and concerted efforts, the settlement discussions have concluded and the parties have reached an impasse,” U.S. Magistrate Judge Anthony Porcelli, the court-appointed mediator, wrote in federal filings.

Attorneys for both sides met with Porcelli five times since late May, when U.S. District Judge Steven Merryday first ordered the case into mediation.

Merryday also granted the request from federal attorneys for more time to respond to Florida’s complaint, arguing they have “already expended a substantial amount of time and resources responding to Plaintiff’s motion for a preliminary injunction.”

The motion from federal attorneys said they “need a short extension of time in order to complete the response, particularly in light of the press of other business.”

Attorneys for the state of Florida did not object to that request for an extension, according to the filing.

The impact of the delay means it’s unlikely Merryday will decide on Florida’s request for a preliminary injunction against the CDC, or the lawsuit itself, until at least July 1.

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