By JENNIFER SINCO KELLEHER
HONOLULU (AP) - Hawaii's Supreme Court is affirming a permit to build a solar telescope on a Maui mountain.
Thursday's ruling denies a challenge by a group seeking to protect the sacredness of Haleakala. The ruling says the University of Hawaii followed proper procedure for an environmental assessment.
University President David Lassner says he's pleased.
Last year, eight people were arrested when protesters tried to stop a construction convoy heading to the solar telescope site. Protest leader Kahele Dukelow says opponents are disappointed and considering further action.
They hoped the decision would be similar to the court's ruling last year that invalidated a permit to build a giant telescope on the Big Island's Mauna Kea. That project has been the focus of more intense protests.
The Maui telescope is scheduled to be operational in 2019.