The Coalition to Save the Marina and the Marina Tenants Association, Inc. filed a taxpayer class action lawsuit Monday, August 23rd, in Los Angeles Superior Court regarding the assignment of the Neptune Marina parcel in the Marina.
Defendants are the County of Los Angeles and the assignee of the Neptune Marina parcel, Legacy Partners Neptune Marina L.P. (Legacy).
The suit also alleges actions by the new lessee concerning rents.
The plaintiffs claim the class action is designed to represent all persons or entities who have rented an apartment or boat slip at Neptune Marina within the last four years.
A hearing date has yet to be determined.
Richard I. Fine & Associates is the plaintiff attorney.
The plaintiffs are alleging that the county “abandoned and abrogated” a section of the master lease between the county and the lessee that mandates price control.
The plaintiffs also allege that the manner in which the county assigned the lease violated the state constitution and “fostered causes of action for negligent misrepresentation and unfair competition and injunctive relief.”
The plaintiffs also allege that Legacy “fostered causes of action for fraud, deceit, negligent misrepresentation, and unfair and injunctive relief” for violating a section of the lease between the county and the lessee by charging “new rents” or charging rents under a void lease.
Legacy spokesman John Santry said he was unaware of the lawsuit and could not comment on the suit.
Fine alleged that in assigning the master lease to Legacy Tuesday, June 23rd, the county violated the state constitution by “giving public funds and property (the Marina del Rey county-owned parcel) to private people by refusing to control prices and rents” as required by the master lease between the county and the Neptune Marina parcel lessee.
The lawsuit alleges that “on or about June 23rd, the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors approved a consent to assignment of a master lease until May 3rd, 2022 for the Neptune Marina parcel.”
The price paid by Legacy to Neptune was approximately $20 million.
The parcel consists of 136 apartment units and 184 boat slips on 7.3 acres of land and 4.7 acres of water leasehold area.
The county assessor had assessed the land to be worth approximately $3,181,274, and the improvements to be worth approximately $3,037,892 — a total value of $6,219,199.
The lawsuit states that the County of Los Angeles has received $162,186 as retroactive rents and will receive an additional amount as interest on the retroactive rent as a condition of the assignment of raising the percentage rent for boat slips and liveaboards 25 percent retroactive to May 4th, 1993, plus interest.
This assignment occurred June 22nd or after, and subsequently Legacy commenced raising rents by establishing “new rents” for apartments and boat slips, the lawsuit states.
Six causes of action, a writ of mandate, and a request for a court-appointed trustee to oversee the Neptune Marina parcel are included in the complaint.