Citizens’ group appeals winery ordinance ruling
By Karen Brainard
The San Diego Citizenry Group is appealing the April 15 Superior Court of California ruling that favored San Diego County’s tiered winery ordinance.
The appeal was filed by Chris Polychron of Coast Law Group on behalf of the citizenry group on June 10 with the Superior Court of California and was received on June 22 by the California Appellate Court.
Carol Angus, Ramona resident and president of the San Diego Citizenry Group, said she certified the appeal that challenges the complete ruling and the amount that the group was ordered to pay the county.
The Citizenry Group’s lawsuit had claimed that the county was in violation of the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA), and the group still contends that, said Angus.
Judge Timothy Taylor, however, disagreed with those findings in his ruling on April 15. The judge also ordered the group to pay the county $16,444 for the cost of preparing the “extensive administrative record.”
Angus said she does not know when the case will be heard. She said there are a number of private citizens in Ramona who are involved in the San Diego Citizenry Group.
Polychron did not respond to the Sentinel’s inquiry about the appeal.
Carolyn Harris, co-owner of Chuparosa Vineyards and legal counsel for the Ramona Valley Vineyard Association (RVVA), said details of the appeal may not be available until October.
“Appeals tend to run slowly,” she said.
Although originally it was reported that the citizenry group had 30 days from the April 15 ruling in which to file an appeal, Harris said she contacted county legal counsel and was told the group had until July 5 to appeal.
“In the meantime,” said Harris, “we have an ordinance and the industry has launched. We have the absolute universal support of the board of supervisors.”
The county tiered winery ordinance allows boutique wineries by right to open wine tasting rooms.
The latest count shows 10 wineries now have tasting rooms or tasting patios in Ramona: Eagles Nest Winery, Edwards Vineyard and Cellars, La Finquita Winery, Lenora Winery, Mahogany Mountain Winery, Pamo Valley Winery, Pyramid Vineyards and Winery, Salerno Winery, Schwaesdall Winery and Woof ‘n Rose Winery.
- Court rules in favor of county’s tiered winery ordinance
- Winery Ordinance is a Must for Ramona
- Winery ordinance ready for supervisors
- Winery change goes to supervisors with no recommendation
- Ramona vintners sign up for tours of town’s tasting rooms
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