Sale of Delta islands on hold – again

Metropolitan Water District of Southern California’s $175 million purchase of five islands in the heart of the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta is on hold again.

The 3rd District Court of Appeal on Friday reinstated a temporary stay order it lifted on Thursday because the parties challenging the sale are going to appeal to the California Supreme Court.

A coalition of environmental groups and local water districts, along with San Joaquin and Contra Costa counties, had requested the stay as part of a broader lawsuit challenging the sale.

Those groups sued in April, arguing the purchase could not go forward without an environmental review. Metropolitan officials have said it makes no sense to do an environmental review before the agency has a firm proposal for how it wants to use the islands.

Ryan Sabalow: 916-321-1264, @ryansabalow