Hearing scheduled for CPO
vs. city lawsuits
by Chris Wilson
As part of Ojai City Council's lengthy meeting Tuesday evening,
closed session discussions continued on a number of pending lawsuits
in which the city is embroiled.
And while the city saw an increase of approximately $90,000 in
the past year for Monte Widders' legal services, he remains tight-lipped
about the details of the closed session discussions.
What has been revealed is that a hearing for the Citizens to
Preserve the Ojai lawsuits, that challenge the Ojai Land Use
Element and the Los Arboles condominium project, was rescheduled
from July 1 to August 16. According to Dan Singer, city manager,
the CPO requested a continuance so they could have more time
to prepare their case.
As for the lawsuit filed in June by attorneys David and Cathy
Jones who are representing Arcade Plaza businesswomen Lisa Clark
and Lisa Sauvageau, a hearing could occur in August before a
superior court judge, Singer said.
David Jones told the OVN that he's filed a demand for settlement,
but was unwilling to disclose the cash terms of the legal request.
He did divulge that the settlement demand requests a sum of money,
seven days notice if the Arcade Plaza construction will block
customers from Clark's business Busy Babes Beauty Supply and
Salon and a request to pay damages if the business is completely
closed for any period of time.
Jones, who along with attorney and wife Cathy Jones is representing
the two business owners for free, said the construction terms
would likely be agreed to, but doesn't expect the City to cough
up any cash unless a judge rules in his client's favor.
Busy Babes and Studio Sauvageau are the only businesses slated
to have access directly impaired during the $1.2 million facelift,
"For the amount of money the City is paying Monte Widders
to defend this lawsuit, they could have settled 5 to 10 times
over," Jones said.
While the case is in litigation, Singer said he was unwilling
to comment further on the details of the lawsuit.
© 2002 The Ojai Valley News
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