The December 22 decision to uphold the legality of rent control for mobile home parks across California may not be the last battle in the war over Rancho Mobile Home Estates in Goleta. (See the December 22 report here.) According to an attorney for park owner Daniel Guggenheim, an appeal to the nation’s highest court is being considered and seems “probable.”
On Monday, Guggenheim’s attorney Robert Coldren pledged, “We and the taxpayers of Goleta and those who support true affordable housing lost the battle but will win the war. A misguided city council is perpetuating a price-fixing scheme at a cost of many hundreds of thousands of dollars and millions in exposure to the city’s strapped treasury. And for what? Vacancy control [in which rents are not allowed to be raised even when ownership changes hands] does absolutely nothing to reduce or maintain low rents for existing mobile home tenants, and does not lower the housing cost to incoming tenants either.”
Noting that he is “glad” about a particular part of the ruling, Coldren believes that the way in which the Ninth Circuit Court decided in the case leaves open a window for appeal. “My colleagues and I, as well as lawyers specializing in U.S. Supreme Court cases, believe the manner in which the panel decided the case paves the way for a U.S. Supreme Court review,” claimed Coldren.