By Eric Heinz
The city of San Clemente has been ordered to pay $480,000 in attorney fees to three legal firms. This follows a previous ruling that San Clemente did not comply with zoning regulations mandated by Senate Bill 2 to allow for adequate land for an emergency or homeless shelter provider to establish such a location.
City Attorney Scott Smith said he thinks the city’s legal insurer, the California Joint Powers Insurance Authority, is unlikely to cover the costs because of a provision set by the Attorney General’s office that applies to circumstances such as this.
“The fees had already been awarded with the original judgement, and it was just a question of how much, and so it could have been a lot worse than it was,” Smith said.
The organization that sued the city is the Emergency Shelter Coalition.
The original request was for $1.2 million for the fees, but the judge awarded $482,000 to the coalition’s representatives.
Now that the lawsuit has been determined, those who sued could apply to establish an emergency shelter in the city’s designated areas in Rancho San Clemente Business Park.