BULLETIN: Rancho Santa Margarita council votes 5-0 passing Resolution supporting property rights Initiative

At tonight’s council meeting in Rancho Santa Margarita, the city council voted unanimously in support of the Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association, California Farm Bureau Federation and California Alliance to Protect Private Property Rights co-sponsored Initiative 07-0015.

After my presentation Mayor Pro Temore Gary Thompson said he may pass on attending any future meetings of the CA League of Cities. They were really applying pressure to gain voter approval of the failed ACA-8 Constitutional Amendment authored by Assemblyman De La Torre.

In my brief comments requesting support of the Resolution I cited two examples of private property that would not have been protected by that failed legislation and the other Initiative which is supported by the League. Namely the Filipino Church in Long Beach and Vaughan Benz furniture manufacturer in south central LA. After the redevelopment Agency voted unanimously to take the Long Beach church property for private condominiums, John Eastman of the Claremont Institute came to the defense of the church resulting in a complete about face. The redevelopment board voting unanimously to allow the church to retain its property.

Brand X’s Initiative fails to protect any faith based property. We learned too late to assist in the case of Vaughan Benz manufacturing whose property was initially taken for an animal shelter only to see a change in their city council representative. Incoming council member Bernard Parks had different plans for the site that did not include a public use. The owners spent three years fighting to no avail. They later stated that “it was three years of torture.” These small businesses deserve to have security of their properties. In my discussion with David Benz he told me that they had 30 employees in two buildings totalling 80,000 square feet generating $5 million in annual sales. These are the small businesses who cannot afford to fight big brother who has an endless bank account of taxpayer funds to force you out when you have no desire to sell.

Member Neil Blais made the motion which was seconded by Mayor Pro Tem Thompson.

To the best of my research this unanimous vote represents the first city in CA to issue a RESOLUTION in support of our Initiative

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