Zoning vs. Eminent Domain: How Ventura County Shut Down The Pine Mountain Inn

In the northernmost reaches of California’s Ventura County, a two-lane rural road called Highway 33 runs into the rugged and …


45 thoughts on “Zoning vs. Eminent Domain: How Ventura County Shut Down The Pine Mountain Inn

  1. Not certain if the Hope's still owned The Wheel, but it and all of the surrounding buildings were consumed in the recent Thomas fire. Some recent activity at Wolf's: brand new metal/plastic picnic tables out in front. Tom Wolfe passed away recently.

  2. I was raised in Ventura County and am very familiar with both of these establishments. It is a crime what the county is doing. I was talking to a friend who still lives in Ventura and he told me that the city is not allowing the residents of Ventura rebuild some of their homes after the Thomas fire. They are saying that the lot sizes are now to small for two story houses.
    It wouldn't surprise me if they are trying to force the owners to resale to increase their tax revenues.

  3. Good work! Those public officials need to be investigated (or I hope they were and duly fired). You can't zone a property to allow commercial uses (like a bar) and then have regulations that make it infeasible to operate. They need to zone that land for conservation, grandfather-in those owners, and then buy out their land if they want the use to be consistent with the zoning. The county must have gotten sued over this.

  4. Good old Bennett he needs to be voted out! yet they aloud people in the Matilija Canyon to live without a proper road, and sell produce " Eutopia" its money and money talks with Bennett oh Steve Bennette that is!

  5. I have been in business 46 yrs. lettering trucks and making signs. I have had in recent months attacked by code enforcement, creating dozens of regulations and fees which will bankrupt me and my kids business. $100,000 in improvements n a 20 yr. old building is demanded, floor drains for oils spills, I don;t fic vehicles, I stick decals on mostly brand new trucks. I never had a customer spill/leak a drop of oil in my place in 46 yrs. but now $40k for floor drains, they measure my dumpster, attach a fire dept. basedo size, the fee to finance dumpster fires. I checked, 9 fires in last yr. they collect $300k in fees for dumpsters, so over $30k to extinguish a dumpster fire is the cost. Then I had a foam block partition to block noise from machines/tool noise in the office, fined for that no permit for the foam. Then I have a paint room they called a spray booth, have no air compressor, no fans, vents etc. strictly to keep dust off my water based painted letters. They fined me. Then saw a spray can of Krylon paint, said I need a permit, licenses and fees for a spray booth to use a can of Krylon spray paint, I said I was painting a part on my van bumper, I was told I will be fined for using it indoors or outdoors to paint the brackets. I sas cited for yard ebris. We have a hot rod project, we are not allowed to have the car in our parkinglot. They fined my sign, 20 yrs. it has been up, I need to conform to new sign bylaws, they claim authority to ban my constitutional grandfather clause because I didn't sign a letter they claim to have sent to maintain my grandfather clause. I informed them local laws can't ver rule constitutional laws, and not signing some fake form to keep it is not possible or constitutional. Grand father laws are federal protection and not required to sign anything to maintain the status. Then I told them I am out about $100k from this weeks visit, just take my keys and give me the address for the welfare office, I quit! I also got a traffic ticket for letters on my personal vehicle, for my co. name. WTF?

  6. The reason they are doing this is simply because the city can not tax citizens outside of the city limits, as well as the city can not push a lot of fines on them that most would unknowingly break within the city limits.

  7. Maybe when some citizens revolt the elected officials will catch on that It's WE the people, not we the politicians that run this country. It's time to stand up and Restore our Rights.

  8. The county is trying to make the property worthless so they can take it over and sell it later to pay for all the pensions they promised the sheriff and other county employees to receive their campaign endorsements.

  9. Land of the free my ass. Eminent domain and civil asset forfeiture prove otherwise. I flip the bird at all government actors, including politicians, judges, Federal/State and Municipal Attorney's AND Law Enforcement officers that actively engage in Eminent Domain and Civil Asset Practices….., from Sea to Shining Sea!

  10. Again this shows the attitude and general poor business practices of California business community. Considering the entire state will be bankrupt by the year 2021,it should be no big deal. A life long plan was to see this cool state. Not i would never spend a penny in this crazy bigoted stated.

  11. AT 1:46, " UNPERMITTED SOLAR PANELS", so now you have to have a permit or license to have solar panels, to use energy from the sun?
    Licensure, when the Government takes away your right to do something, and then sells it back to you!

  12. This is all part of a multiple government, multiple agency bid to make the transition from regular tax revenues to profit driven policing policies. People are not getting any richer, the revenue from taxes now is not what it used to be. But the agencies all want to stay at their current level of employees. So, they have to find ways to bring in extra money. Fines are the most common way to get money for the profit driven police. But now they are seizing anything that has auction potential, including cell phones and TV sets, and any amount of cash they can find. A pitiful $500 is the most common amount taken by the police. They'll say it's from drug sales and take the money and you are innocent. You have to prove that it's NOT from drug sales. City governments are seizing assets now when a homeowner cannot fix something in the time they're given. All kinds of offices in city, county, state and federal jurisdictions are doing this. They say they MUST get the proceeds from anything they seize. They are paying their own salaries with what they seize. Tell your congressman you do not support eminent domain and civil asset forfeiture. It's the only thing we can do to stop this.

  13. This is tragic…and not the way to save ecosystems at all.
    Firstly people need autonomy and community … trust the people to safegaurd habitats… So Mr faceless authoritarian state your only JOB here is to give communities a bit of wildlife advice and finance when THEY request… this situation is evil bollox

  14. The idea is the same as eminent domain. Render you to where you wish to leave/sell the place. Problem, the property will have nobody willing to buy it (it is at this point useless, because the gov't broadcasts this to the world). So some ass fu*k politician buys it for pennies on the dollar and builds his mcmansion after razing everything to the ground.

  15. Local government has always been a pimple on the hand of progress. It is time we as a nation relegate local government to its true purpose, which is to clean dead dogs from the street. Under no circumstances does local government, or even state government, ever have the right to usurp authority which not even our ever growing federal government would have the audacity to usurp.
    Trump is right about gutting bureaucracy. He just hasn't gone far enough. No one has the right to tell others what to do with their property as long as there are no major safety hazards being committed. We The People are never beholden to prove to bureaucracy that our activities meet their standards in order to gain permission to do business or enjoy our property. It is the other way around. The bureaucrat should always be required to prove their case to the satisfaction of an impartial judge and jury in order to force compliance with their often insane and overly picky regulations.

  16. My Dad Tom Wolf and my Mom both did everything in their power to take back what was justly theirs but Ventura County was and is crooked. I thank my Dad for giving the experience and memories of Pine Mountain to myself, my children, our family and those patrons who were a part of my Dad's pride in his place. If he was alive today to tell you thank you for letting him share his Dream with you, he would. Over a beer and bowl of chilli! God bless.

  17. If a business has been there for years, should not that business fall under the "grandfather" clause?

    Here in NJ, there is a story of an adult video store and a township that wanted them gone…

    There is an adult book store on a main road of town. It is a county road and the township has no say on the road itself. But one day the township decided to build a school across the street from the adult video store.

    The township thought they will just bully the owner to closing forever.
    But the adult video store was there first and the school was not even being started to be built. The township tried even changing the ordinances but because the adult video store was there before the ordinance changed, they were allowed to stay under court order.

    The township tried eminent domain but with most clauses on business the township has to locate another place for the business. Everywhere they tried to put the adult video store, they could not under new laws that stated that the adult book store can not be near a church, school, a bus stop , and an intersection with a crossing guard.

    So the owner took the township to court and used the grandfather clause to keep the store where it is now. And to this day, there is an adult video store across the street from an elementary school.

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