Editor's note: This article was revised Aug. 11 at 3:17 p.m. to provide additional information
Andra Belknap, Ojai Valley News reporter
Chris Gardner, the author of the Plan Don’t Ban initiative, believes he has a strong legal case against the city of Ojai in the wake of his petition’s rejection for inclusion on the November ballot.
Gardner's lawyer, Andrew Gilford of Baute, Crochetiere & Gilford LLP, sent a letter to City Attorney Matthew Summers Aug. 11, calling the city's rejection of the petition wrongful.
“Our ultimate goal is to let the voters of Ojai get a voice. If that means we have to litigate, we’ll litigate. If it means we have to bring another petition to bear, we’ll do that,” said Gardner, who stated that a fair and transparent council-led discussion about limited, local rentals would be the best option.
“At this point, they’ve been unwilling to do that,” he said. “I feel an obligation to the 869 people who signed my petition to bring this to fruition,” he said.