The owners of The Classic Cat restaurant on the Sunset Strip in West Hollywood filed a lawsuit against the city and county of Los Angeles on Monday. They claimed ongoing coronavirus restrictions could force the restaurant to close until Friday.
The restaurant operator has leaned backwards to please the county and town to reach the goal posts that keep moving. This emerges from the Los Angeles Supreme Court complaint that the company uses a retractable roof that creates a COVID-safe outdoor deck and has added numerous protective measures, including improvements to plexiglass and ventilation.
“Meanwhile, unconstitutional shutdowns and restrictions prevail, while heads of government and health inspectors issue arbitrary orders while protecting health data from the public,” says the lawsuit, in which inspectors began to question whether the outdoor patio was actually an indoor operation trades its airflow and issued a quote.
Despite the owners’ best efforts, The Classic Cat received notice from a health inspector that the restaurant will have to close on Friday if it doesn’t stop and refrain from the alleged violation, the lawsuit said.
The civil rights action applies for injunctive relief plus unspecified damage.
A county spokesman declined to comment directly on the lawsuit but made a statement.
“Since the pandemic began, Los Angeles County has been committed to protecting the health and safety of its residents, responding in real time to a deadly virus that tragically claimed the lives of 21,000 people in Los Angeles County alone and more than a million made others sick, ”was the explanation.
A representative from the city of West Hollywood said the city council approved a local emergency declaration in March 2020 to ensure the availability of mutual aid and to ensure the health and safety of the population as it responds to the coronavirus.
“While the city of West Hollywood cannot comment on specific legal action, the city is under the jurisdiction of the Los Angeles County Department of Health and the city is actively enforcing the LA County Health Officer order and related protocols,” the statement said. “All businesses in the City of West Hollywood have a duty and responsibility to ensure the safety of their guests and employees.”
One of the owners of The Classic Cat says he understands the health concerns but thinks the actions taken in response are unfair.
“We understood the need to protect public safety during a pandemic, and like so many restaurant owners, we bent backwards to be as proactive as possible,” said Donn Berdahl, one of the restaurant owners who delayed our reopening month. The longer the delays, the more our expenses pile up without incurring income and our employees face the prospect of losing their jobs. “
The Classic Cat attorneys say that the owners have no choice but to try to protect their investment, as well as the interests of the restaurant workers they consider family members, by filing a lawsuit against a “broad.” “vaguely transgressing government” protest. “
In the White House press conference on Monday, White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki urged Congress to act on the American bailout plan, noting that 11 million will lose unemployment benefits on March 14. Psaki also said nearly 1 million households with unemployment insurance report children are not eating enough and 1.5 million or more are behind on their rent or mortgage.
“Patience can only get you this far if you stick to the rules, but how are companies supposed to survive when the rules of the game are constantly changing?” Said the plaintiff’s attorney, Rod Pacheco, in need of immediate protection. We need immediate restraining orders from an overarching government that has not provided health data to justify its capricious and arbitrary shutdown orders. “
The historic Classic Cat was a popular stopover for locals, tourists, and celebrities like Adam West, Charlton Heston, Chevy Chase, and Jim Morrison. Classic Cat’s modern owners say they wanted to build on that legacy but with an upscale feel and menu.