Appellate court hearing scheduled in San Luis Obispo
May 5, 2010
In an unusual move, the California 2nd District Appellate Court will hear oral arguments regarding a contentious local appeal in the San Luis Obispo County Board of Supervisor chambers on Thursday at 9:30 a.m.
An Oceano business owner, whose property has been plagued by flooding, appealed a ruling by San Luis Obispo Superior Court Judge Martin J. Tangeman. The judge had ruled that Bill Bookout’s flooding problems were not the result of government errors.
Bookout contends that because Caltrans raised the highway and has continued to shovel debris into the drainage system in an effort to protect neighboring properties, his Oceano Nursery building has repeatedly flooded and is now unusable because of mold.
In 2006, Bookout sued Caltrans, the Oceano Community Services District, San Luis Obispo County, the Pismo Oceano Vegetable Exchange, and the Union Pacific Railroad. He lost the suit and in 2008 laid off 12 employees and closed the Oceano Nursery.
Meanwhile, over the past year, the highway has flooded 13 times.
San Luis Obispo County Supervisor Katcho Achadjian said he believes the appeals case will help identify the party responsible for the flooding problems.