When is a house a home?
On Monday, a Florida judge issued a preliminary injunction against the Trump Organization over the proposed sale of the properties it owns.
The court ruled that the company could not sell the properties without first obtaining a “full and fair sale” of the Trump properties in Florida.
The order was issued in response to a complaint filed last week by the Florida Department of Environmental Protection.
It says that the Trump company’s proposed purchase of the property, which would include two of the three Trump properties located on the Florida Keys, is a “scheme to circumvent Florida’s Coastal Landmark Preservation Act.”
The plaintiffs argue that the proposed purchase violates a number of federal and state laws.
The judge’s order notes that the defendants did not seek to “obtain a sale of these properties without a full and fair market appraisal of the real estate.”
“The defendants’ scheme to circumvent the Coastal Landmarks Preservation Act, by obtaining a full-priced and fair appraisal of a commercial property for which the Trump family owns a significant interest without a proper consideration of the commercial potential of the site, violates the Coastal State Constitution, the Federal Land Policy and Management Act, the Coastal Development Act, and the Coastal Heritage Act,” the order reads.
In a press release, the plaintiffs argue: “We believe that the Florida Coastal Landmarked Preservation Act requires a sale before the government can get a fair market price for the land.
In order to obtain a sale, the defendants need only demonstrate that they have no interest in the land, and that the property is being used solely for commercial purposes.”
The lawsuit claims that the planned sale of one of the land parcels is “an abuse of eminent domain.”
“The sale of this property violates Florida’s land use laws,” the lawsuit reads.
“The sale is illegal under federal law, the state’s Coastal Heritage and Landmarks Act, Florida’s Land Code, and a federal land use permit.
The sale violates Florida Coastal Heritage Landmarks Protection Act (GPLPA).”
According to the lawsuit, the Trump-owned property in Palm Beach, Florida, would include a hotel and condominium.
“This is an egregious example of an unlawful and unenforceable sale of a real estate asset, that is contrary to the public interest, and violates the Constitution,” the suit says.
“The Florida Coastal Restoration Act requires that the government consider whether a sale is in the public’s interest, including a ‘fair market price.'”
In a statement, the company said it is evaluating the order.
Earlier this month, the president of the Florida Chamber of Commerce, Michael McGhee, said in a statement that “the Trump administration has failed miserably to enforce its own laws and regulations.”
“If they don’t stop, they are going to have to get serious,” he said.