After years of battling over the pro shop and driving range concession at the Sepulveda Golf Course complex, the existing operator has won a court battle to try to force the city to honor its 15-year agreement with him.
Michael Bernback and Ready Golf won a writ of mandate, with Los Angeles Superior Court Judge James Chalfant ordering the city to sign the contract allowing Ready Golf to remain at the course. The company has been operating on a month-to-month contract for a decade, but the city has been trying to evict it and install city workers to run the concession.
"We haven't heard if they will appeal, but all it does is add to my attorney bills they will have to pay," Bernback said. "And the people who lose are the golfers - because I can't commit to making any capital improvements - and the taxpayers who pay the bills."
The city will have 60 days once the final judgment is entered to decide if it will appeal the ruling.
Regina Adams, assistant general manager of the Recreation and Parks Department, said she will meet with the City Attorney's Office to determine the next course of action.
Two concessionaires at other city golf courses have left in recent years after disputes with the city under an overall effort to make the courses more profitable.
The city also tried to evict Ready Golf in a dispute over a utility bill. Bernback said the claim was false and that he had a written agreement showing the city had overcharged him.
Bernback said he has had to respond to three requests for proposals for the concession and has won approval from the City Council and the mayor.