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Jason's Cafe, a Menlo Park diner, shutters following ADA suits

Original post made on May 2, 2019

Jason's Cafe, which had been in operation in Menlo Park for 11 years, closed May 1, according to Jason Kwan, the cafe's owner.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Thursday, May 2, 2019, 10:30 AM

Comments (111)

84 people like this
Posted by Resident
a resident of Atherton: Lloyden Park
on May 2, 2019 at 10:54 am

Sad to see Jason's go, great place with fair prices. These ADA lawsuits are horrible as they always want more than just upgrades. They want to get paid off to go away.


82 people like this
Posted by Menlo Voter.
a resident of Menlo Park: other
on May 2, 2019 at 11:18 am

Menlo Voter. is a registered user.

I really wish they would change the law so that these predatory lawyers that want nothing more than a payoff to go away could no longer file these suits. These things amount to nothing more than legal extortion.


79 people like this
Posted by Joseph E. Davis
a resident of Woodside: Emerald Hills
on May 2, 2019 at 11:42 am

The only thing more vile than a serial ADA litigator is the law that is written to encourage such abuse.


46 people like this
Posted by LN
a resident of Menlo Park: Sharon Heights
on May 2, 2019 at 12:27 pm

Good letter to the editor today in the Daily Post regarding an alternative to the current ambulance-chasing extortion-oriented lawsuit mechanism currently employed for ADA actions. We would all have to write our legislators for this to happen. I'm certainly game. I'm tired of people driving around the various communities banging on small businesses and making money off these lawsuits. Gives a bad name to lawyers :) !!


46 people like this
Posted by MenloMike
a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on May 2, 2019 at 12:29 pm

“ ADA lawsuits and Abuse of Process?"

This area of the law requires legislative correction.

There is a reasonable solution to the many ADA lawsuits that cause congestion in the courts and great expense to Defendant Business owners, with inadequate resolution for the disabled:

If a disabled person is denied access to a business due to a violation of State and or Federal ADA laws, the Disabled Person should:

1) Notify the business owner in writing (no attorney needed).

(most business owners are willing to correct ADA problems, if notified)

2) The business owner should have a reasonable time to make the changes as required by law. (30 to 90 days depending on the extent of the violation, with extensions permitted for weather and other uncertainties)

3) If the changes are not made, THEN: the disable person may notify the local city building inspector, who can then require compliance, if appropriate.

4) If the business owner fails to comply with the city inspector’s order, then the city can assess fines and other remedies as permitted by the city codes.

5) If the business owner still fails to comply with the requirements of the City Inspector and the ADA law; OR if the City Inspector fails to act, THEN: the disabled person may retain an attorney to file a lawsuit under the ADA law and rules.

The present system of “Going Directly to Court" is an open invitation for what is commonly, and nationally, referred to as: “DRIVE-BY LAWSUITS”; in which lawyers represent disabled persons who may go door to door looking for a Defendant to sue for a cash settlement.

Our legislators need to correct this.



26 people like this
Posted by B
a resident of Menlo Park: Downtown
on May 2, 2019 at 12:31 pm

Dutch Goose had a similar situation a while back. Fortunately, it was able to work through and stay open.

I agree that owners/proprietors are between a rock and hard place -- make the upgrades to comply, go to court, or close your business. And upgrades can be costly -- ask the owner of the Dutch Goose.

I'm not say make reasonable accommodations for people with disabilities, I dislike those whose sole purpose it to stick it to the businesses.


60 people like this
Posted by owner's issue
a resident of Portola Valley: Portola Valley Ranch
on May 2, 2019 at 12:35 pm

Seems like it's on the landlord - won't he/she have to comply before renting to a new tenant anyway?

Seems like it would have been easier to replace that (awful) bathroom and keep a good, longterm tenant. Maybe not.


22 people like this
Posted by Flynn
a resident of Menlo Park: other
on May 2, 2019 at 12:39 pm

Wouldn't surprise me if this was just a way to get them out so the property could be put in play. It's happening all around them, as it is.


12 people like this
Posted by Mary
a resident of Menlo Park: Suburban Park/Lorelei Manor/Flood Park Triangle
on May 2, 2019 at 3:45 pm

Really such a shame! One of the last places to go in Menlo Park to get a good breakfast at a reasonable price!


11 people like this
Posted by LREvans
a resident of Menlo Park: The Willows
on May 2, 2019 at 4:16 pm

LREvans is a registered user.

Such a shame. Great food and a super staff of long time employees. We are so sad to see all of it go. Mr. Kwan, please try to reopen in a new location. You would have tons of customers.


22 people like this
Posted by Need new law
a resident of Menlo Park: other
on May 2, 2019 at 10:22 pm

The ADA lawyer Scott Johnson has filed thousands of these lawsuits. Just run his name in Google search. It is really unfortunate, because instead of notifying the owner and asking them to comply, he sues them. He caused many great business to close. My favorite deli in San Jose, Time Deli closed because of him. There should be a law that give the owners 60-90 days to comply with ADA compliance depending how fast the permit is issued. We need to make things right for all parties. Suing only closing good businesses down and good people who work hard to open a business.

Web Link


16 people like this
Posted by Local PV
a resident of Portola Valley: Central Portola Valley
on May 3, 2019 at 3:52 am

Wouldn't it have nice if the building inspector gave Jason's a list of all the things that needed to be done so that pesky person wouldn't have needed to make multiple trips & lawsuits. Shame on the building inspector - he is partly to blame for th multiple visits


15 people like this
Posted by Menlo Voter.
a resident of Menlo Park: other
on May 3, 2019 at 7:33 am

Menlo Voter. is a registered user.

Local PV:

The building inspector has noting to do with this. The building inspectors make inspections during construction, not after. At the time the build was built the ADA didn't even exist. I don't think the ADA was in place when it was remodeled either.

What this amounts to is legal extortion by this slime ball lawyer.


12 people like this
Posted by Howard Crittenden
a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on May 3, 2019 at 1:13 pm

Howard Crittenden is a registered user.

Last year in Washington H.R. 620 was proposed. The proposed law would change the process for how disabled persons would cause change. It would eliminate the filing of a law suit as the first course of action. It appears it was passed in the House and forwarded to the Senate.
Google ‘Congress H. P. 620’
It seem unjust for a person to enforce a poorly painted handicapped parking space, a front door that requires more effort to open, and bringing an end to a restaurant that was loved by the community. The staff was very pleasant and helpful. I am sure they held the door open for the slime ball so he could come is to see that else he could sue for. As a result, the entire restaurant employee staff are out of work. A building sits vacant. Hundreds of sad and disappointed patrons are sent packing. A business owner is sued amassing legal fees settlements paid to the professional opportunist and loss of his business. Lots of losers and only two winners. The professionally disabled and his litigating lawyer, Scott Johnson.
Joke. The National Institute of Health (NIH) announced last week that they were going to start using lawyers instead of rats in their experiments. Their logic made sense. There are some things even a rat won't do.
Something is wrong when this is the solution to accommodating the disabled. It is unjust and immoral.
In past years I dated a wonderful woman who is wheelchair bound. She has an honest job and said that if she couldn't access the facilities of a business, she went someplace else. She knew that it was unfair to be enriched on the short comings of unaccommodating, however, still useful building.
I also hired a public relations consultant who is a quadriplegic due to a tragic event. He too, accepted his disability and prepared for his limitations every time he went out. He didn't feel he needed to make a very lucrative living destroy the lives and death of businesses.
There are things properties and business owners can do to reduce their exposure from those who ruin lives and suck the blood of others. The maze is complex and expensive, but it does not have to be life ending. It is sad when our society allows this and innocent hard working business owners are brought to their knees in court. There must be a better way.
Write your Senator telling them to support H. R. 620. I don't know if the bill changes names or titles when it goes to the Senate. If there is an update from the readers, please post it.
Democracy only works when the citizens get involved. Otherwise, we are just sheep.


19 people like this
Posted by abby part timer
a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on May 3, 2019 at 1:22 pm

All these buildings that have still not been updated after all these years. Ridiculous. Greedy real estate firms too lazy to adequately update their buildings.

Making it easier for building owners to continue to drag their feet and hamper the challenged public is crazy.

I dated someone (with a dishonest job) in a chair and I learned a lot.


17 people like this
Posted by abby part timer
a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on May 3, 2019 at 1:23 pm

I'm sorry for Jason and his customers, caught between a greedy owner and an ambulance chaser.


25 people like this
Posted by Howard Crittenden
a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on May 3, 2019 at 1:31 pm

Howard Crittenden is a registered user.

Business and property owners.
To avoid or reduce exposure form ADA lawsuits
Hire a Certified ADA Consultant. They can be found by searching online.
Have an inspection of your business building. The consultant will prepare a list the deficiencies. Start with the easy and inexpensive improvements, especially the ones easily seen from the street or sidewalk. For the more expensive, prepare a plan as to how these major upgrades will be accomplished. Maybe commit to set aside a certain amount of money each year towards ADA upgrades.
Your consultant will offer more accurate advice.
Find an attorney who is experienced in this field.
Be proactive.


4 people like this
Posted by PaulN
a resident of Menlo Park: Downtown
on May 3, 2019 at 2:09 pm

1) And now Gonzales is suing the Chevron gas station! This has to stop!
2) The terrible thing is now the “older” generation doesn’t really have any place for dinner that is reasonably priced. Stacks should open for dinner!


21 people like this
Posted by Howard Crittenden
a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on May 3, 2019 at 4:17 pm

Howard Crittenden is a registered user.

ADA is a nation wide law. This is not a local issue.
Send two short letters asking our US Senators to support H. R. 620 which will delay litigation as the first step.
Hand written and mailed is best. Typed letter is next followed by email and phone.

Democracy doesn't work without citizen involvement.


Feinstein, Dianne - (D - CA) Class I
331 Hart Senate Office Building Washington DC 20510
(202) 224-3841
Contact: www.feinstein.senate.gov/public/index.cfm/e-mail-me

Harris, Kamala D. - (D - CA) Class III
112 Hart Senate Office Building Washington DC 20510
(202) 224-3553
Contact: www.harris.senate.gov/contact


3 people like this
Posted by Howard Crittenden
a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on May 3, 2019 at 4:29 pm

Howard Crittenden is a registered user.

Correction
Send two short letters asking our US Senators to support H. R. 620 which will REQUIRE WRITTEN NOTICE as the first step before litigation.


30 people like this
Posted by owner's issue
a resident of Portola Valley: Portola Valley Ranch
on May 3, 2019 at 5:57 pm

"The terrible thing is now the “older” generation..." also needs access as they grow old and use walkers and wheelchairs.

There's places we no longer take Mom out to on Sunday evening dinners since she needed a walker, because access is non-existent or atrocious.


9 people like this
Posted by Manlo Punk
a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on May 3, 2019 at 6:02 pm

Bummer! Last place in Menlo Park to get a great meal, with very friendly people at a more than reasonable rate.

Sorry to see them go!


24 people like this
Posted by neighbor
a resident of another community
on May 4, 2019 at 3:22 pm

I submitted this letter to the Palo Alto Daily News -- it seems appropriate to print it here too......

The ADA became law in 1990. The regs have been well known to commercial property owners for almost 3 decades — & consist primarily of very simple parking, egress, & bathroom access standards. Even though the requirements have been known to restaurant operators for a LONG time, this group especially avoids implementing them.

Mr. Kwan knew the ADA requirements very well, even prior to his acquisition of Jason’s because he has multiple restaurants in this area — yet he did NOTHING to comply with the law when he acquired the Cafe. He also did little to improve the restaurant’s appearance….which was filthy for the entire 11 years the restaurant was open. The letter writer “Suspicious” posits that the ADA lawyers might be trying to grab Jason’s property. Here’s an alternate theory: Maybe Jason didn’t make ANY improvements to the property, or even clean it, because HE was waiting for a real estate windfall.

The ADA is, and will be, essential to quality of life for more and more people and will be especially important to baby boomers who are lucky enough to get older. Disability comes with age — but also consider that inaccessible restaurants also block the families who want to take their disabled kid out for a burger.

I suddenly became disabled in my late 50s. I needed a wheelchair for several years, but luckily eventually graduated to a cane. I soon discovered physical barriers I had never noticed: Restaurants with inaccessible upstairs/downstairs bathrooms, stores with perpetually broken elevators, doors I couldn’t open, handicapped parking on extreme slopes, etc.

Believe me, your world quickly changes when you become disabled.

Perhaps some of the hostility towards disabled people comes from the fact that there are a lot of scammers. Believe me, truly disabled people are pissed at the scammers. Don’t get me started on the fraudulent use of Handicapped Stickers or people claiming that their 10lb. poodles are “emotional assistance dogs” as they sniff/lick the food in markets.

Maybe the hostility is just a sign of the mean times we live in. But it has to stop. This is America — we’re supposed to care about one another.


20 people like this
Posted by neighbor
a resident of another community
on May 4, 2019 at 3:23 pm

The ADA became law in 1990. The regs have been well known to commercial property owners for almost 3 decades — & consist primarily of very simple parking, egress, & bathroom access standards. Even though the requirements have been known to restaurant operators for a LONG time, this group especially avoids implementing them.

Mr. Kwan knew the ADA requirements very well, even prior to his acquisition of Jason’s because he has multiple restaurants in this area — yet he did NOTHING to comply with the law when he acquired the Cafe. He also did little to improve the restaurant’s appearance….which was filthy for the entire 11 years the restaurant was open. The letter writer “Suspicious” posits that the ADA lawyers might be trying to grab Jason’s property. Here’s an alternate theory: Maybe Jason didn’t make ANY improvements to the property, or even clean it, because HE was waiting for a real estate windfall.

The ADA is, and will be, essential to quality of life for more and more people and will be especially important to baby boomers who are lucky enough to get older. Disability comes with age — but also consider that inaccessible restaurants also block the families who want to take their disabled kid out for a burger.

I suddenly became disabled in my late 50s. I needed a wheelchair for several years, but luckily eventually graduated to a cane. I soon discovered physical barriers I had never noticed: Restaurants with inaccessible upstairs/downstairs bathrooms, stores with perpetually broken elevators, doors I couldn’t open, handicapped parking on extreme slopes, etc.

Believe me, your world quickly changes when you become disabled.

Perhaps some of the hostility towards disabled people comes from the fact that there are a lot of scammers. Believe me, truly disabled people are pissed at the scammers. Don’t get me started on the fraudulent use of Handicapped Stickers or people claiming that their 10lb. poodles are “emotional assistance dogs” as they sniff/lick the food in markets.

Maybe the hostility is just a sign of the mean times we live in. But it has to stop. This is America — we’re supposed to care about one another.


67 people like this
Posted by peninsula resident
a resident of another community
on May 4, 2019 at 4:49 pm

"Perhaps some of the hostility towards disabled people"

Oh Gawd, just stop.

Nobody associated with this or other discussions on this matter has any hostility towards disabled people. Take your assertion and shove it you-know-where.

The issue is predatory lawsuits that have the sole purpose of enriching Mr. Scott Johnson and others like him. Mr. Johnson doesn't give a flying fig about improved access; if he did, he wouldn't accept payments IN LIEU of access improvements. He's fleecing the financially weakest of business owners; it's no more noble than that.

"The ADA became law in 1990"

Excuse you. There have been changes to the law since 1990, so even buildings that use to be in compliance as of 1990 may no longer be in compliance. You left out that important detail.

Go back to Carmichael, Mr. Johnson. You are not welcome here. As far as I'm concerned, the fact that Mr. Johnson is a paraplegic is karma, and considering he's been accused by his employees of sexual harassment, he deserves not 1 ounce of sympathy for his condition.


33 people like this
Posted by owner's issue
a resident of Portola Valley: Portola Valley Ranch
on May 4, 2019 at 4:55 pm

" You are not welcome here. As far as I'm concerned, the fact that Mr. Johnson is a paraplegic is karma..."

Bad day? Lemme guess - you had Maximum Effort and life was good for a couple minutes in the mud. Oooooops...

"The issue is predatory lawsuits" The poster brought up good points about facilities that have not been updated in 30 years. That *should* be the issue.

"There have been changes to the law since 1990" and Jason's bathrooms never met any of the criteria.






5 people like this
Posted by whatever
a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on May 4, 2019 at 8:18 pm

Fyi Chef Kwans takeout just put new ADA restrooms in - because a suit was filed at that establishment also.


When r the ambulance chasers going to sue us for not having ramps and ada bathrooms in our homes.


11 people like this
Posted by pogo
a resident of Woodside: other
on May 5, 2019 at 5:49 am

pogo is a registered user.

High rent, high taxes and tons of incredibly expensive regulations and requirements.

And you wonder why "mom and pop" businesses are being replaced by Starbucks, Applebees and Home Depot...


3 people like this
Posted by Menlo Voter.
a resident of Menlo Park: other
on May 5, 2019 at 8:35 am

Menlo Voter. is a registered user.

"When r the ambulance chasers going to sue us for not having ramps and ada bathrooms in our homes."

When they can, they will.


9 people like this
Posted by neighbor
a resident of another community
on May 5, 2019 at 12:11 pm

If you are lucky enough to live a long life, your odds of becoming disabled are nearly 100%.. You will feel differently about ADA access requirements --- & will be grateful for a handicapped parking place + a door you can open & a toilet you can use.


22 people like this
Posted by be proactive and you will avoid this conundrum
a resident of Menlo Park: other
on May 5, 2019 at 1:02 pm

Instead of engaging in shaming the ADA plaintiff who Congress instructed to file these suits, how about you direct your energy to the property owner, who for a modest $500-$1500 contract, can bring in a Certified Access Specialist, certified after rigorous testing by the Stat of California's Division of State Architect, to come in and inspect your facility, tell you what needs to be fixed, and after the problems are fixed you get a sticker on the window saying you are compliant. Problem solved! The hand-wringing about the "shake-down artists" is overblown and is only made possible by the fact that as a business owner you didn't familiarize yourself with the important laws governing your facility and take some relatively inexpensive actions to put yourself ion compliance with the law. I agree that once you are sued the costs escalate dramatically, but how about fixing the problem before you get sued. Web Link


6 people like this
Posted by resident/customer
a resident of Menlo Park: Sharon Heights
on May 5, 2019 at 2:20 pm

The ADA should have funds to help pay businesses for their ADA renovations.
What's better would be that Scott Johnson and Gerardo Hernandez stop suing and start their own foundation with their past vulture money to help businesses with ADA renovations. Right now they should be ashamed of themselves for using their disabilities for monetary gain and destroying businesses.
I am short in height, overweight, and have hearing loss, but I don't expect every store, restaurant, airport to cater to my needs.


45 people like this
Posted by abby part timer
a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on May 5, 2019 at 4:16 pm

30 years since the law passed.

Owners are betting that it's cheaper to stall and inconvenience disabled customers than fix their old, reeking bathrooms.

And then the inner lays it on their tenants.


2 people like this
Posted by abby part timer
a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on May 5, 2019 at 4:20 pm



And then the *owner lays it on their tenants.


15 people like this
Posted by really?
a resident of Menlo Park: other
on May 5, 2019 at 5:30 pm

We need to correct the assumption that Kwan was waiting for a real estate windfall. Greenhart made several offers to add the property into the Station 1300 project being built now- good offers! But the owner was having none of it, as running a dump seems to have taken priority.

None of this would be happening if Jason's sold up. If Chevron get's hit with an ADA suit, then they should have sold to Greenhart as well when they had the chance.

Adding a full ADA bathroom (i'm not sure if Jason's had one or not) is a huge undertaking in a small restaurant- it can tim you into a whole remodel costing hundreds of thousands in upgrade. As a business owner it's best to always put some fresh paint on your ADA parking spaces right away as these litigants use Google-Earth to research their targets and if it looks like you've done work, then you're not a target.


41 people like this
Posted by long term resident
a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on May 5, 2019 at 5:47 pm

It is nothing more than thoroughly disgusting these attorneys that do nothing more than seek to enrich themselves with these disgusting lawsuits.

Net result we have lost a great place to have breakfast ( or lucnh or dinner)
and thrown out of work a competent staff of workers. Great result!

Jason's always accommodated wheel chairs and the handicapped.

The law and compensation for these low-lives who instigate these suits needs to be changed.


8 people like this
Posted by George Fisher
a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on May 5, 2019 at 6:01 pm

George Fisher is a registered user.

The bigger problem is Menlo Park, both prior city council,and voters (No on M), abandoned retail (favored “community serving businesses”, like lawyers and realtors), in favor of increased office and high cost housing. Lost favorite retail for unconscionable traffic and increased property values. Not ADA fault, or poor retailers, that hang in as long as they can, before property owners demand maximizing property value given them by Menlo Park.


2 people like this
Posted by Scottie Sharpe
a resident of Menlo Park: Downtown
on May 5, 2019 at 8:32 pm

The ADA is destroying this nation bit by bit. You can not make handicapped people stronger by improving a few bathrooms. The money is ill spent on architectural changes as most of it is absorbed into the bureaucracy and regulations and very little of that money is actually spent on building upgrades. The money would be better spent on technology designed to make handicapped people's lives better. For example, most handicapped people still use wheelchair technology designed in the late 1800's. This is a a time when everyone should be using segways that can navigate indoor and outdoor stairs, stand up on their "hind" wheels (so users can see over counters for example). Poor government, greedy lawyers and bleeding heart voters are the bane of our nation.


22 people like this
Posted by neighbor
a resident of another community
on May 5, 2019 at 9:28 pm

It's stunning -- and heartbreaking -- to read the hateful comments on this thread. The last writer started his comment with "The ADA is destroying this nation bit by bit." REALLY?? And, handicapped people should use Segways?? Is the writer sober or is he joking? It isn't funny.

And I thought Menlo Park was an enlightened, caring community. But, I've learned otherwise. It's heartbreaking.

The community has gone to bat for a scofflaw who avoided making safety and access law. I guess burgers are more important,


43 people like this
Posted by peninsula resident
a resident of another community
on May 6, 2019 at 12:20 pm

'neighbor', a suspected resident of Carmichael, CA, wrote:
"You will feel differently about ADA access requirements"

Strawman. Nobody is arguing against having ADA access requirements.

The issue is the enforcement mechanism: it enables predatory lawsuits that have the sole purpose of enriching Mr. Scott Johnson and others like him. Mr. Johnson doesn't give a flying fig about improved access; if he did, he wouldn't accept payments IN LIEU of access improvements. He's fleecing the financially weakest of business owners; it's no more noble than that.


4 people like this
Posted by neighbor
a resident of another community
on May 6, 2019 at 1:43 pm

I don't live in Carmichael.....don't even know where that is.
I'm a neighbor.


36 people like this
Posted by owner's issue
a resident of Portola Valley: Portola Valley Ranch
on May 6, 2019 at 1:52 pm

"The ADA is destroying this nation bit by bit."

Absolute hysteria. Why not just bring Godwin into this as well?

The property owner had decades to update; the owner is likely paying really low property taxes on a piece of land that they've owned for awhile and they're raking it in - yet never bothered to even plan to fix it.

Not sure why a tenant would want to work with such an owner - perhaps it was just a bet for how long they could get away with it? Well, iot worked for over a decade. One assumes that was the most they could reasonably expect.


8 people like this
Posted by Howard Crittenden
a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on May 6, 2019 at 1:53 pm

Howard Crittenden is a registered user.

Send two short letters asking our US Senators to support H. R. 620 which will REQUIRE WRITTEN NOTICE as the first step before litigation.

Hand written and mailed is best. Typed letter is next followed by email and phone.

Democracy doesn't work without citizen involvement.


Feinstein, Dianne - (D - CA) Class I
331 Hart Senate Office Building Washington DC 20510
(202) 224-3841
Contact: www.feinstein.senate.gov/public/index.cfm/e-mail-me

Harris, Kamala D. - (D - CA) Class III
112 Hart Senate Office Building Washington DC 20510
(202) 224-3553
Contact: www.harris.senate.gov/contact


20 people like this
Posted by owner's issue
a resident of Portola Valley: Portola Valley Ranch
on May 6, 2019 at 3:24 pm

"Democracy doesn't work without citizen involvement."

Funny that. True. Democracy also doesn't work well with greedy property owners ignoring decades old laws.


15 people like this
Posted by local mom
a resident of Menlo Park: Downtown
on May 6, 2019 at 4:41 pm

Many, if not most, restaurants are operating with razor thin margins. We'd all love to be 100% ADA compliant, but not when the cost of renovation is 5X operating income.

The law needs improvements to increase compliance without bankrupting small businesses.


9 people like this
Posted by MenloParkbiz
a resident of Menlo Park: The Willows
on May 6, 2019 at 6:44 pm

MenloParkbiz is a registered user.

Thank you local Mom and all of the others that have posted in support of the small business owners in the Bay Area. I have many reasons to respond, I have a mother who relies on a wheel chair for transportation and I have a developmentally disabled brother. So, I completely understand and appreciate ADA compliance. That said, I rent a space in Menlo Park in a business strip that was built in the 1950's - our building was built out 15 years ago and is fortunately ADA compliant. That said, I have now witnessed the ownership of the building change hands four times in 11 years. Never once, in those four transactions were inspections done for compliance. Why? Because there are no regulations or laws that require inspections. That makes it okay for landlords to pass the cost on to the tenants when someone decides they have a legitimate reason to sue a business owner. And yes, it is true, 95% (if not more) of what a small business takes in (especially food service) goes right back out the door. Assuming it is the fault of the small business owner is just not fair.


10 people like this
Posted by None
a resident of Menlo Park: other
on May 6, 2019 at 6:51 pm

The Atty for G. Hernandez is TE Moore in SJ. She's making millions of dollars a year up and down the Peninsula. She reassigned Mission Law LLC into own Moore Law Office when E. L. Falk, Mgr Mission Law, filed Bankruptcy. She is named on a RICO in Saniefar v Moore/Falk/Mission Law. The case nbrs on pacer.gov are 1:2018bk14207, 1:2019ap01009, 1:2017cv00823, 1:2017cv00823 arising from [see 'Website'] Maybe organize picketing her office? Prior clients who sued her might join in.


26 people like this
Posted by neighbor
a resident of another community
on May 6, 2019 at 6:59 pm

This "prohibitive costs" of obeying the law is a total myth -- perpetuated by property owners. ADA improvements DON'T break the bank, In fact, often property owners roll the ADA costs into a total remodel (Dutch Goose). Then many cry publicly about the small very basic access portion of their project. Those costs are paid over YEARS and compliance is a tiny portion of the mortgage.

We all know there's a development push along El Camino--so it is altogether possible that the property owner didn't make the legally required improvements because he was holding out for a real estate pay-off when he sells.

Perhaps he now knows exactly when that is going to happen. He never improved the property, kept it non-compliant with the law, and didn't even keep the building clean.

The 3 ADA lawsuits are now an especial problem -- because now that the property will be redeveloped, the costs of the lawsuits and/or settlement can't be paid out over time. But his lawyer will do the old stall dance.


30 people like this
Posted by Menlo Voter.
a resident of Menlo Park: other
on May 6, 2019 at 7:31 pm

Menlo Voter. is a registered user.

This isn't about ADA compliance with this lawyer. It's about a payday. If it was actually about compliance this lawyer wouldn't take a payment in lieu of ADA upgrades.


39 people like this
Posted by abby part timer
a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on May 6, 2019 at 8:33 pm

Greedy owner had 20 years to comply. Tenant got caught and pays the price. Ambulance chaser distracts all 5he posters from greedy worthless owner.

Customers got stinky bathroom.


31 people like this
Posted by Menlo Voter.
a resident of Menlo Park: other
on May 7, 2019 at 8:05 am

Menlo Voter. is a registered user.

"Customers got stinky bathroom."

And yet they continued to patronize the place for 10 years. I guess they didn't care, did they?


8 people like this
Posted by where's law and order?
a resident of Menlo Park: other
on May 22, 2019 at 2:08 pm

"This isn't about ADA compliance with this lawyer. It's about a payday. If it was actually about compliance this lawyer wouldn't take a payment in lieu of ADA upgrades."

This is simply not the law. Educate yourself by reading the federal statute, or the California statutes, or the thousands of cases interpreting these statutes, instead of the cliff notes from the chambers of commerce or the shaming media stories. Civil rights statues entitle the clients to recover prevailing party fees under fee-shifting statues designed to vindicate civil rights. Your federal and state legislature has legislated this outcome. This is the law:

ADA: Sec. 12205. Attorney's fees

In any action or administrative proceeding commenced pursuant to this chapter, the court or agency, in its discretion, may allow the prevailing party, other than the United States, a reasonable attorney's fee, including litigation expenses, and costs, and the United States shall be liable for the foregoing the same as a private individual.

California Disabled Person's Act:
California Civil Code Section: 54.3.

(a) Any person or persons, firm or corporation who denies or interferes with admittance to or enjoyment of the public facilities as specified in Sections 54 and 54.1 or otherwise interferes with the rights of an individual with a disability under Sections 54, 54.1 and 54.2 is liable for each offense for the actual damages and any amount as may be determined by a jury, or the court sitting without a jury, up to a maximum of three times the amount of actual damages but in no case less than one thousand dollars ($1,000), and attorney’s fees as may be determined by the court in addition thereto, suffered by any person denied any of the rights provided in Sections 54, 54.1, and 54.2. “Interfere,” for purposes of this section, includes, but is not limited to, preventing or causing the prevention of a guide dog, signal dog, or service dog from carrying out its functions in assisting a disabled person.

Unruh Act, Cal Civ Code Section 52.

(a) Whoever denies, aids or incites a denial, or makes any discrimination or distinction contrary to Section 51, 51.5, or 51.6, is liable for each and every offense for the actual damages, and any amount that may be determined by a jury, or a court sitting without a jury, up to a maximum of three times the amount of actual damage but in no case less than four thousand dollars ($4,000), and any attorney’s fees that may be determined by the court in addition thereto, suffered by any person denied the rights provided in Section 51, 51.5, or 51.6.


24 people like this
Posted by Jack Hickey
a resident of Woodside: Emerald Hills
on May 24, 2019 at 4:39 pm

Jack Hickey is a registered user.

Looks like Scott Johnson has run afoul of the "law". See "Frequent ADA plaintiff indicted" in today's Daily Post".

ADA laws should only apply to publicly owned facilities, paid for by ALL taxpayers, disabled or not. They definitely should not be used to force Uber and Lyft drivers to provide wheelchair access! Uber and Lyft should make sure that their aps are not misleading. Government has a role in that area.


4 people like this
Posted by Menlo Voter.
a resident of Menlo Park: other
on May 24, 2019 at 7:03 pm

Menlo Voter. is a registered user.

The Idictment: Web Link

Tax fraud. Screwing people over with bogus law suits wasn't enough, he had to cheat on his taxes as well. Karma's a bitch.


12 people like this
Posted by neighbor
a resident of another community
on May 25, 2019 at 9:15 am

At first I was stunned to read Hickey's comment, t hen wasn't surprised at all given his past Libertarian remarks.

I'm disabled and ashamed of Menlo Park neighbors who don't support equal access. They will feel differently one day if they live long enough to be disabled.


14 people like this
Posted by Merlina
a resident of Menlo Park: other
on May 25, 2019 at 9:41 am

"I'm disabled and ashamed of Menlo Park neighbors who don't support equal access."

Agreed - I am also ashamed of these posts. The restaurateur should long since had had a pair and had the owner make her building compliant with long term standing law.

How could a law be in place for so many years and the owner of the building is allowed to ignore the law? And then these 'libertarians' raise a ruckus about the law being enforced?

For shame.


29 people like this
Posted by peninsula resident
a resident of another community
on May 25, 2019 at 10:17 am

Regarding Scott 'serial ADA litigator' Johnson's tax fraud indictment:

Fortunately for Mr. Johnson, the jail cell he'll be in is probably ADA compliant :)


8 people like this
Posted by neighbor
a resident of another community
on May 25, 2019 at 10:45 am

Peninsula resident -- snarky humor is what 12 year olds do.

BTW jail cells are compliant, unlike Jason's Restaurant.

Remember me when you or a relative becomes disabled. You won't laugh, because disability is not funny.


35 people like this
Posted by peninsula resident
a resident of another community
on May 25, 2019 at 11:09 am

'neighbor' wrote:
"Remember me"

I already do. Every time I read a strawman argument, I'm reminded of you.

Your strawman arguments have been pointed out in the past, yet you persist in posting strawmen nonetheless. I welcome thoughtful debate, but strawmen are not thoughtful debate, they're logical fallacies not worthy of debate. If you want to have thoughtful discussions on the merits of ADA...and more pointedly its enforcement mechanism...I welcome it. But until you completely and totally cave on your logical-fallacy-laden posts, you are less likely to see thoughtful feedback from your 'Menlo Park neighbors'.

The problem is not your 'Menlo Park neighbors' in this discussion. The problem is you. Please feel free to get back to us when you're willing to have a thoughtful discussion.

And you might want to try apologizing for your repeated strawmen. That would go a long way towards improving the quality of the debate.

Your move.


8 people like this
Posted by neighbor
a resident of another community
on May 25, 2019 at 12:04 pm

Straw-men!! What utter semantic nonsense. I have a long history as a university professor and urban planner, and recognize superficial analyses on an essay. Peninsula resident: You get a D on that letter.

As I have written many times, I AM DISABLED, and have personal experience with denied access.

But, before BECOMING disabled, I served on several disability commissions -- most members were disabled. They struggled everyday to have normal experiences -- a meal out is one of them. I learned that what we all take for granted is often a struggle.. Note: One of my colleagues on that commission helped write the ADA.

Then, it happened to me. And I'll say it every time I respond to this mean thread. The world quickly becomes very different when you are disabled.

ADA lawbreakers have had almost THREE decades to get their act together. Restaurant modifications are neither complicated or expensive. Shame one the lawbreakers.

Don't give me sass about how the lawyer filed a false tax return....I AGREE that all tax scofflaws should be in jail. Perhaps he will be in jail next to the ADA lawbreaker. That would make for some interesting discussions.

Finally -- and m most important -- I will never ever agree that ADA is unfair to public facility owners.....NEVER.


32 people like this
Posted by whatever
a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on May 25, 2019 at 1:03 pm

Not sure me Kwan owns the building. 2009 records show Baird Lands Inc of Walnut Creek owning the property with a property valuation for tax purposes of only $290k, which means they've probably owned the property for over 40 years.


33 people like this
Posted by Merlina
a resident of Menlo Park: other
on May 25, 2019 at 1:29 pm

"with a property valuation for tax purposes of only $290k, which means they've probably owned the property for over 40 years."

WEALTHY OWNER, PAYING ALMOST NO PROPERTY TAXES, HAD THE PROPERTY FOREVER, AND THEY CAN'T BE BOTHERED TO UPGRADE A BATHROOM?

Y'all keep defending essobee. Had decades to make a couple simple fixes.

Slumlords would be envious.

The issue to 3 posters is a lawyer. For shame. The issue to normal folk is a decades long ignorance of the law to save a few bucks.

Wealthy landowners feel they do not have to obey laws.


33 people like this
Posted by Pal Joey
a resident of Atherton: other
on May 25, 2019 at 1:51 pm

Owners out of compliance should spend a few nights in a (compliant) jail cell.

Bathrooms would be fixed in a week.


3 people like this
Posted by Jack Hickey
a resident of Woodside: Emerald Hills
on May 25, 2019 at 2:18 pm

Jack Hickey is a registered user.

My taxes do not finance Jason's, or any other similar private enterprise. I do not expect to be "entitled" to determine how that enterprise conducts it's business, only that it be truthful in it's advertising. Somehow, the ADA has ostensibly "entitled" a class of individuals, known as the "disabled", to demand special accommodations from these private enterprises. That part of the ADA should be repealed. Conversely, the government should not prevent private enterprises from embellishing their facilities as they see fit to attract clientele of their choosing. Laws which limit their choices should be repealed.


4 people like this
Posted by neighbor
a resident of another community
on May 25, 2019 at 4:05 pm

My poor use of "public" when I should have said both "public & private" got Jack Hickey alll excited. Now he has a new cause besides Sequoia Hospital.

The ADA clearly applies to all facilities -- definitely restaurants are included as are bookstores, markets, drug stores, movie theaters, etc.

Jack Hickey doesn't realize that disability can happen to anyone (everyone, even Libertarians.


22 people like this
Posted by Pal Joey
a resident of Atherton: other
on May 25, 2019 at 4:24 pm

Wrong: Somehow, the ADA has ostensibly "entitled" a class of individuals, known as the "disabled", to demand special accommodations from these private enterprise.

The law requires safe accessable accommodation.

Hickey thinks businesses get to choose who they offer service to...

How about obey the law?


1 person likes this
Posted by Jack Hickey
a resident of Woodside: Emerald Hills
on May 25, 2019 at 5:03 pm

Jack Hickey is a registered user.

"The law is a ass" Dickens.
Web Link

The law must be changed.


23 people like this
Posted by peninsula resident
a resident of another community
on May 28, 2019 at 7:24 pm

"I have a long history as a university professor"

And yet you apparently don't know what a strawman is. You get an 'F' for your post.


I find it fascinating that you would so vigorously defend a law (and more importantly its enforcement mechanism) that still does not have full compliance...by your OWN admission...30 years later. It's stunning to me that an alleged 'professor' doesn't see the correlation between the crappy enforcement mechanism (and the low-lifes it attracts) and the lack of complete compliance. I'm amazed at your ability to rally against your own best interests.

Instead of railing against any changes to the ADA enforcement mechanism, maybe you should acknowledging the fact that the ADA needs to find a better way to improve access for the disabled. By your own admission, we're 30 years in without full compliance.

I can think of any number of ways to improve compliance with ADA, without the need for recruiting the leaches you so heartily embrace, some of which have been mentioned by others. A fund setup by the state for the state to pay a portion of the costs for remodeling a building to support access would be just 1 option. Also, in the case of restaurants, these are frequently inspected for health code violations. I'd argue that safe access to a building and bathrooms is a safety issue that can be made within the purview of a health code requirement.

But no, those options never cross your mind...I wonder why?...hmmmm...

"One of my colleagues on that commission helped write the ADA."

Ah, now I get it. You're defending your colleague. Your outrage is less about access for the disabled and more about defending your colleague's flawed enforcement mechanism. Nice priorities.


10 people like this
Posted by neighbof
a resident of another community
on May 28, 2019 at 10:21 pm

Colleague? Are you serious? I have no colleagues these days. I wouldn't know this lawyer if he bumped into me.

When I became severely disabled many years ago I was forced to retire. I experienced the difficulties of getting around PERSONALLY.

Your arguments are not only hurtful, they are ridiculous. Shame on you.


2 people like this
Posted by pogo
a resident of Woodside: other
on May 28, 2019 at 10:53 pm

pogo is a registered user.

After retiring from politics, Senator George McGovern purchased a 150 room inn in Connecticut.

In “A Politician’s Dream is a Businessman’s Nightmare” written for the Wall Street Journal, McGovern described how government regulations crippled his business.

From the article:

"I also wish that during the years I was in public office, I had had this firsthand experience about the difficulties business people face every day. That knowledge would have made me a better US senator and a more understanding presidential contender.

Politicians with no background in business have a naive view that regulations either impose no costs on businesses or that these costs can easily be shifted to customers or workers.

The concept that most often eludes legislators is: `Can we make consumers pay the higher prices for the increased operating costs that accompany public regulation and government reporting requirements with reams of red tape.’ It is a simple concern that is nonetheless often ignored by legislators.

I believe, changed the debate of our party. We intuitively know that to create job opportunities we need entrepreneurs who will risk their capital against an expected payoff. Too often, however, public policy does not consider whether we are choking off those opportunities."

McGovern eventually went bankrupt when he was required to make major changes (essentially to make his inn ADA compliant) while doing some simple construction upgrades.


14 people like this
Posted by neighbor
a resident of another community
on May 29, 2019 at 11:18 am

In his speech, McGovern points out that the hotel went bankrupt for a variety of reasons -- the hotel was a bad investment and was in trouble when he invested. In the tape, McGovern focuses on the costs of providing health care insurance for hotel employees. (Of course this would be solved by a national health insurance system -- I know that will make you wretch).

In the YouTube tape, McGovern doesn't specifically mention the ADA. Perhaps there is a longer version.

Regardless, if significant modifications needed to be made, McGovern should have been aware of that before he invested. I suspect that he was part of a large investment group, and may not have known about the health care costs or ADA issues -- or other hotel costs.

If there is more information somewhere on the tape to explain this, swell. BUT it still doesn't refute the validity of the ADA. ADA has been the law for nearly 30 years.

Even McGovern needed to follow it.


16 people like this
Posted by abby part timer
a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on May 29, 2019 at 3:33 pm

Context before the "I wish" claim:

"In retrospect, I wish I had known more about the hazards and difficulties of such a business, especially during a recession of the kind that hit New England just as I was acquiring the inn's 43-year leasehold."

Rookie business owner. Should have known the law.

If he knew the business, he would have made the simple changes as described in a timely manner: make major changes (essentially to make his inn ADA compliant) while doing some simple construction upgrades

Even with all those amateur mistakes, he would have been profitable with universal health care available.


Like this comment
Posted by pogo
a resident of Woodside: other
on May 30, 2019 at 8:04 am

pogo is a registered user.

I cite this because McGovern was a frequent guest lecturer at my college. He was as nice and unassuming guy as you'd ever meet. At my business law class, he spoke openly of his experience with the Stratford Inn. When he was remodeling some of the upstairs rooms he was forced to redo the bathrooms and widen the hallways (both VERY expensive, unanticipated and unnecessary as there were complaint rooms on the first floor and the inn had no elevator at the time) as a requirement of his permit. That turned a relatively modest remodel into a major reconstruction. McGovern was simply unable to repay the much larger loan that was needed and the business went bankrupt.

I never said that ADA requirements weren't important. But McGovern's point was that politicians should be forced to live under the laws the pass. They need to understand that these additional burdens can put an enterprise out of business.

These ADA lawsuits have become nothing more than a shakedown worthy of Tony Soprano. That doesn't mean ADA isn't a good thing - it should simply not be a bludgeon to extort business owners.


13 people like this
Posted by owner's issue
a resident of Portola Valley: Portola Valley Ranch
on May 30, 2019 at 8:33 am

" it should simply not be a bludgeon to extort business owners."

Agreed. As you would agree that owners who have had 20-30 years to obey the law deserve little of the pity shown above, correct?


13 people like this
Posted by neighbor
a resident of another community
on May 30, 2019 at 10:28 am

The bottom line: ADA is the law. It's been upheld and passed every challenge in the courts. ADA is 29 years old.

Scofflaws are law-breakers.


4 people like this
Posted by Joseph E. Davis
a resident of Woodside: Emerald Hills
on May 30, 2019 at 11:58 am

Is it a just law? No, it is not. That is why the law should be changed to forbid this kind of shake down operation, and why the perpetrators of such destructive acts should be shamed.


17 people like this
Posted by neighbor
a resident of another community
on May 30, 2019 at 12:22 pm

Sorry Joe.....ADA is a good law. That's not going to change.

The fact that there are opportunists are suing ADA law-breakers isn't going to change the law itself.

So you and all the other Libertarians who oppose ADA and other health & safety laws are just going to have to live with it.


22 people like this
Posted by David B
a resident of Portola Valley: Central Portola Valley
on May 30, 2019 at 12:53 pm

Wow, what a comment thread!

Those of you who say "obey the law", should recognize that ADA regulations are a constantly-changing target: there were the 1991 standards, the 2004 standards and the 2010 standards.

And, the standards don't allow for "almost but not quite" compliance. I know a property that is spending $25,000 to rip out a sidewalk and replace it, because the old one was slanted at 2.5 degrees and the current requirement is 2 degrees; and another property had to replace bathroom doors (+ drywall, tile, etc.) because the doors were 31 inches wide (legal when they were installed) and the current spec is 32 inches.

My dad was in a wheelchair, and I appreciate the need for accessibility. But I wish there were a reasonable middle between no accessibility, and the current state of people shaking down building owners with their tape measure.


42 people like this
Posted by owner's issue
a resident of Portola Valley: Portola Valley Ranch
on May 30, 2019 at 3:12 pm

"But I wish there were a reasonable middle between no accessibility, and the current state of people shaking down building owners with their tape measure."

Me too. One would like to live in a world where greedy building owners would take pride in their buildings, in which they support their entire community by making their building accessible...

.. over a THIRTY YEAR period.

Oh, wait, there is a reasonable middle to be achieved over decades: obey the law.

Jason's didn't have any of the strawmen offered above (2.5 degree slope, law enhancements over the 30 years, etc..) It did have a greedy building owner who wouldn't support his long term tenant.


4 people like this
Posted by Simple Solution
a resident of Menlo Park: The Willows
on May 30, 2019 at 7:47 pm

How about just deferring ADA compliance to code enforcement where it belongs rather than the courts? No financial incentives for the lawyers, and if someone legitimately has an issue to report they can do so right on their phone through a reporting app like Menlo’s See-Click-Fix.


Like this comment
Posted by looking on
a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on May 31, 2019 at 8:00 am

A long detailed article on Scott Johnson has just been posted by the Sacramento Bee:

See:

Web Link


Like this comment
Posted by Menlo Voter.
a resident of Menlo Park: other
on May 31, 2019 at 9:14 am

Menlo Voter. is a registered user.

From the article it sounds like not only is he a tax cheat, he's a perjurer. Too bad they aren't going after him for that. Based on the article he has claimed hundreds of times in legal filings to have visited businesses he never visited. What a scum bag.


27 people like this
Posted by neighbor
a resident of another community
on May 31, 2019 at 9:22 am

Because Scott Johnson is an opportunist does not negate the ADA law.

His actions took advantage of the fact that restaurant owners were operating illegally. They ignored ADA -- a law that was in place for 30 YEARS.

The property owner, indeed everyone, knew what was required. Look around Menlo Park, and you'll see compliance with the law all around you. This property owner ignored the law. He is a scofflaw.

Health & Safety laws are in place for good reason.


8 people like this
Posted by Interior Designer
a resident of another community
on May 31, 2019 at 11:56 am

There are some interwoven concepts in this thread, unfortunately, with some doggedly defending their narrow area of interest and ignoring the big picture. And "straw-man" is definitely the most overused term in this thread. Find a new one. My comments will address the ADA in practice, not this particular lawyer and not this particular business owner and his landlord.

As a professional designer for the past nearly 40 years, my career has spanned the full life of the ADA. First of all, while I completely support the tenant of the ADA, that disabled persons have a right to equivalent access to public facilities (and for the ever-persistent Mr. Hickey, a public facility is a facility that is open to the public, whether the ownership is public or private), in practical terms enforcement has been imperfect as the implementation of this legislation has evolved.

As someone else may have pointed out, the ADA is civil rights legislation, not a building code. It has taken years for the model building codes to adopt standards in an effort to insure that new and remodeled public facilities comply with the legislation. Building codes are developed in mainly 3-year cycles. The International Building Code (IBC) is adopted by many, if not most, jurisdictions, but State, County and local modifications are applicable, as well. And, ultimately, due to the nature of the legislation, enforcement for existing properties tends to occur when a) the building is modified for other reasons and b) when there is a lawsuit alleging inadequate access.

Some on this thread have wisely noted that any owner of a public building and any tenant running a business that is open to the public would be well advised to have a plan to make incremental modifications to the property to maintain compliance. And, yes, that may mean that a modification that was compliant under an older building code may one day no longer be compliant as the codes evolved. An example: There are more and more motorized wheelchairs. These wheelchairs really need more room to maneuver than other types of wheelchairs. For a time code committees were considering enlarging the required space for wheelchair maneuvering, which, if implemented, would suddenly make every wheelchair accommodation that was previously compliant, no longer compliant.

However, there will always be times when complying with the ADA in an existing building is physically impossible (as the laws of physics do trump the laws of man...) There are also cases where modifications to existing buildings that are designated as historic (and I'm not suggesting that the building in question in this thread falls in that category) will allow perfect compliance. In those cases I agree that there needs to be modifications to existing legislation to prevent this type of lawsuit. And there must be modifications to allow for a timeline for owners and tenants of existing buildings to comply.

But I agree with those who say that simply not-complying is not an option. It is the price of doing business in the U.S. And other countries are more and more adopting similar legislation as their citizens demand it.

I hope this business owner will be able to reopen either in this or another location. With the real estate market as absurdly expensive as it is in Menlo Park, and the entire Peninsula, I suspect, like many, he may want to head to a more affordable community.


Like this comment
Posted by Jack Hickey
a resident of Woodside: Emerald Hills
on May 31, 2019 at 3:53 pm

Jack Hickey is a registered user.

The oath of office for the State of California(which I took when I was elected to the Sequoia Healthcare District Board of Directors states:
"I, _________________________________, do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will
(Print Name)
support and defend the Constitution of the United States and the Constitution of the State of California against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the Constitution of the United States and the State of California; that I take this obligation freely, without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion; and that I will well and faithfully discharge the duties upon which I am about to enter and during such time as I hold the office of..."

There is no mention of enforcing laws. As I said before, in the case of ADA, "the law is a ass". It should not be enforced by those sworn to "...bear true faith and allegiance to the Constitution of the United States..."

"Interior Designer" does not provide any arguments in defense of the ADA law he merely cites the fact that it exists. Anyone who understands the message sent by Ayn Rand in Atlas Shrugged, should be repulsed by this overstepping of bounds by the federal government.


20 people like this
Posted by Court Front
a resident of Woodside: other
on May 31, 2019 at 4:03 pm

Heartless.

....

Then to cite the hypocrite who led the libertarian cult is silly. Old Ayn had no problem being on the government dole as she aged. Perhaps it's Russian values. Dunno.


Like this comment
Posted by Jack Hickey
a resident of Woodside: Emerald Hills
on May 31, 2019 at 4:18 pm

Jack Hickey is a registered user.

I'm waiting for Wesley Mouch to post a comment. Or maybe he already has?
BTW, The Atlas Shrugged movie is in the Menlo Park library.


34 people like this
Posted by owner's issue
a resident of Portola Valley: Portola Valley Ranch
on May 31, 2019 at 5:20 pm

Ayn Rand, an immigrant from Russia, was a huge hypocrite. She declared the government should let people starve, should let them be sick and die in the street.

Showing an immoral sense of personal responsibility to others, Rand had no problem taking handouts when it was her term to rot and starve. A lifelong HEAVY smoker (personal responsibility,) she used up services she belittled for others as the inevitable lung cancer tore her up, and collected the evil Social security as well.

Principles.

Take Rand's hypocrisy to another thread, Jack Hickey.

Jack can also add in the topic of open borders, which as an immigrant she supported. She also lied to get a visa, and arranged a marriage before the fraudulently obtained visa expired.

Principles.


25 people like this
Posted by peninsula resident
a resident of another community
on Jun 1, 2019 at 12:36 pm

"There are some interwoven concepts in this thread, unfortunately, with some doggedly defending their narrow area of interest and ignoring the big picture."

Exactly. I could not have said it better myself.

A good portion of the controversy surrounding the ADA is the enforcement mechanism, and its de facto recruitment of leaches like Mr. Johnson as its method of enforcement. These same people that defend their narrow area of interest chose to condemn owners (with some justification I'll add) while simultaneously giving the ADA law a free pass for its role in the lack of complete adherence to the ADA 30 years later.


By the way, I love this:

'neighbor' wrote:
"Scott Johnson is an opportunist"

But business owners that are out of compliance with the ADA are "scofflaws" and "lawbreakers", as stated by 'neighbor'.

I love the use of the euphemism 'opportunist'. Scott Johnson is an accused sexual harasser, convicted tax cheat, and serial litigator. Yet because Mr. Johnson enriches himself using a law 'neighbor' supports, all of Mr. Johnson's sins and illegal activity get wrapped into the innocuous label 'opportunist'.

On the other hand, a business owner somewhere in California with a 2.25% grade on their sidewalk (for example) or faded paint in a handicapped parking spot (for example) is a 'lawbreaker'.

Interesting...


10 people like this
Posted by owner's issue
a resident of Portola Valley: Portola Valley Ranch
on Jun 1, 2019 at 3:38 pm

> a business owner somewhere in California with a 2.25% grade on their sidewalk

List ten real life CA examples of a 2.25% graded sidewalk that had to be replaced by the business owner?

Top three?

"Interesting..."


3 people like this
Posted by Jack Hickey
a resident of Woodside: Emerald Hills
on Jun 1, 2019 at 4:32 pm

Jack Hickey is a registered user.

A sign warning of a sloped sidewalk should suffice. If it ain't broke, don't fix it.


9 people like this
Posted by Menlo Voter.
a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Jun 1, 2019 at 4:45 pm

Menlo Voter. is a registered user.

"Scott Johnson is an accused sexual harasser, convicted tax cheat, and serial litigator."

You forgot "perjurer". He has repeatedly filed affidavits claiming he was at various businesses when he was no where near them.


19 people like this
Posted by pogo
a resident of Woodside: other
on Jun 4, 2019 at 5:57 am

pogo is a registered user.

Interior Designer -

Yours is an excellent post and very thoughtfully written. I think most of the people who are complaining about ADA litigation abuse would agree with your thought. I do.

But the issue here isn't ADA value or compliance. These attorneys have NO interest in correcting non-complaint structures so people in wheelchairs can have access.

These are shakedowns, nothing more. In fact, the demands of these attorneys is to pay them off (usually $5,000 to go away) and the complainer WON'T file a formal complaint or demand correction. That really says it all.

As I said, these people could teach Tony Soprano a thing or two about extortion.


32 people like this
Posted by neighbor
a resident of another community
on Jun 4, 2019 at 9:43 am

Nonsense and hearsay. Pathetic.
Honestly, the avoidance of simply complying with ADA -- as most commercial services did LONG AGO -- is shocking. The law is 30 years old....time to shut up and follow the law.


26 people like this
Posted by yeah yup yes
a resident of Atherton: other
on Jun 4, 2019 at 8:52 pm

"could teach Tony Soprano a thing or two about extortion"

I don't recall Tony extorting those that obeyed the law, mostly just someone with something to hide.

Thirty years and no remodel?! That's *trying* to avoid the law.


18 people like this
Posted by obey bucko
a resident of Menlo Park: Downtown
on Jun 4, 2019 at 10:59 pm

obey the law and the shyster goes away


29 people like this
Posted by Crane Cruz
a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Jun 5, 2019 at 1:33 pm

Why don't the building owners get charged?


10 people like this
Posted by pogo
a resident of Woodside: other
on Jun 6, 2019 at 6:05 am

pogo is a registered user.

A lot of you have missed the point.

The lawyers don't ask the business owner to FIX the alleged defect. The lawyers want money NOT to file a formal complaint.

That's self-enrichment, not solving the problem. It does nothing for those who need the accommodation.


8 people like this
Posted by neighbor
a resident of another community
on Jun 6, 2019 at 11:55 am

I wonder how many lawsuits it will take until owners comply with the 30-year old law. I hope it's just one.


14 people like this
Posted by peninsula resident
a resident of another community
on Jun 6, 2019 at 12:32 pm

"A lot of you have missed the point."

No, they haven't missed the point. They just don't care. And their egos are so fragile on this matter that they're unwilling to yield even the slightest of concessions on this topic. Pathetic.

"neighbor", "owner's issue" and others care not one bit that the ADA's current enforcement mechanism empowers no changes to improve access for the disabled for almost 30 years. They don't care.

The ADA has played a role in perpetuating the lack of access for 30 years, creates in some cases difficult and|or unreasonable requirements on business owners, and creates incentives for the leaches of society to NOT enforce the ADA provided they're paid off. They don't care.

Their only concern is punishment and protecting their egos, NOT ensuring reasonable access for the disabled.



4 people like this
Posted by Jack Hickey
a resident of Woodside: Emerald Hills
on Jun 6, 2019 at 1:09 pm

Jack Hickey is a registered user.

"I wonder how many lawsuits it will take until owners comply with the 30-year old law. I hope it's just one."

I wonder how many lawsuits it will take to overturn this law, with all it's unintended consequences?


10 people like this
Posted by owner's issue
a resident of Portola Valley: Portola Valley Ranch
on Jun 6, 2019 at 1:29 pm

Geez, all these folks with property interests... and add the "all government sucks" so-called libertarian.

30 years for building owners to support their small business tenants by taking a pittance of their massive profits, some of their Prop 13 protected minuscule property taxes...

...AND FIX A BATHROOM!



> 2009 records show Baird Lands Inc of Walnut Creek owning the property
> with a property valuation for tax purposes of only $290k, which means
> they've probably owned the property for over 40 years.



It isn't the law or lawyers who are hitting small business owners - it's the owners. Look at Jason's property!

$290k valuation?!?!?!?

(here comes the strawmen "I know a property with a sidewalk....")








10 people like this
Posted by neighbor
a resident of another community
on Jun 6, 2019 at 1:44 pm

JACK -- you have as much chance of overturning ADA as you have to getting your way re: your ad nauseam Sequoia Hospital attacks. Little and none.

PENINSULA RESIDENT -- Your comments are wishful thinking nonsense. Most. MP business comply with the law.

Even the Dutch Goose eventually complied after their nearly endless whining. They had little choice since they were remodeling -- no compliance, no remodeling permit.

The community compliance with ADA along the Peninsula has been generally been quite successful. The exceptions have been property owners unwilling to put a dime into their businesses. Jason's is the best recent example. Not only did they ignore ADA, they ignored basic cleanliness at the restaurant. It was FILTHY. But I guess that's fine with the Libertarian folks.


12 people like this
Posted by peninsula resident
a resident of another community
on Jun 8, 2019 at 10:06 am

Alleged professor 'neighbor' wrote:
"PENINSULA RESIDENT"

Calm down, 'neighbor'. There's no need to yell :)


"Your comments are wishful thinking"

Do you have an example? (this should be entertaining, provided you have the integrity to answer the question. We'll see).


"owner's issue" wrote: "here comes the strawmen"

LOL, you clearly don't even know what a strawman is! Your usage is bizarre. "Interior Designer" is right: '"straw-man" is definitely the most overused term in this thread. Find a new one.'

Or at the very least, try to understand the words you usely and use them correct, as it affects your credibility.


8 people like this
Posted by owner's issue
a resident of Portola Valley: Portola Valley Ranch
on Jun 8, 2019 at 12:03 pm

Alleged peninsula resident:

"Calm down"

From the poster with the following language:

pathetic
bizarre
egos are so fragile
and shove it you-know-where
You are not welcome here
a paraplegic is karma
uses the phrase: Strawman
-followed by: "straw-man" is definitely the most overused term in this thread. Find a new one.
- and: Every time I read a strawman argument, I'm reminded of you
The problem is you
You get an 'F' for your post

By all means, let's "calm down".

...

Speaking of fallacious arguments: "I find it fascinating that you would so vigorously defend a law that still does not have full compliance...by your OWN admission...30 years later. It's stunning to me that an alleged 'professor' doesn't see the correlation between the crappy enforcement mechanism (and the low-lifes it attracts) and the lack of complete compliance... By your own admission, we're 30 years in without full compliance."

Murder's been on the books for a while, yet we should ignore it because we have been unable to provide "full compliance"?

...

Back to strawmen, errr, alleged peninsula resident's fallacious sidewalk example:
> a business owner somewhere in California with a 2.25% grade on their sidewalk

List ten real life CA examples of a 2.25% graded sidewalk that had to be replaced by the business owner?

Top three?

"Interesting..."

...

Still waiting.


12 people like this
Posted by peninsula resident
a resident of another community
on Jun 8, 2019 at 3:22 pm

"owner's issue" wrote:
"From the poster with the following language:

pathetic"

You have a very selective memory. I noticed you conveniently overlooked this little gem from your pal the alleged professor "neighbor", posted before mine:

"Posted by neighbor, a resident of another community
"on Jun 4, 2019 at 9:43 am
"
"Pathetic.

If you're going to get triggered and be snowflakey when someone out-debates you and uses your words and your buddy's words against you, then don't dish out words you're not prepared to hear. Simple.


"shove it you-know-where"

Context: alleged professor 'neighbor' wrote: "the hostility towards disabled people".

This assertion is utterly false, and deserved condemnation. Nobody has been hostile towards disabled people in this conversation. Stop acting triggered.

This conversation has consistently shown almost everyone agrees that disabled folks need access to public buildings (the only area where there was some disagreement was Mr. Hickey's distinction between private business that serves the public vs. government public buildings. FWIW while I think it's a fair discussion point, ultimately I don't agree with Mr. Hickey's POV).


"You are not welcome here"

Context: This was directed at Scott Johnson, a serial sexual predator, serial litigator, serial perjurer, and convicted tax cheater. "Not welcome" is being kind.

Mr. Johnson is the man *you embrace* as your preferred method of enforcement. Nice priorities.


"paraplegic is karma"

Context: This was directed at Scott Johnson, a serial sexual predator, serial litigator, serial perjurer, and convicted tax cheater.

Mr. Johnson is the man *you embrace* as your preferred method of enforcement.

Karma.


"uses the phrase: Strawman"

'neighbor' used strawmen as part of his posts. I called them out. If you don't like me to point out strawmen, there's an easy solution: don't post strawmen.


"-followed by: "straw-man" is definitely the most overused term in this thread. Find a new one."

This...right here...proves you don't bother (or don't comprehend) *reading the posts you respond to*.

I said no such thing. That's a quote from 'Interior Designer', who I agree with, FWIW.


"The problem is you"

Context:
'neighbor wrote': "ashamed of Menlo Park neighbors who don't support equal access."

I responded: "The problem is not your 'Menlo Park neighbors' in this discussion. The problem is you."

Yes. Your Menlo Park neighbors support access for the disabled, and 'neighbor's assertion otherwise is false and problematic. The problem is that you and 'neighbor' fail to grasp the distinction between supporting access and supporting the method of enforcement. The problem is that you and 'neighbor' like to throw around unsubstantiated accusations simply because there are aspects to the ADA in which others don't agree with you.


"You get an 'F' for your post"

Yet another example of your selective memory. Context:
'neighbor' wrote: "You get a D on that letter."

I responded: "You get an 'F' for your post."

Don't dish it out if you can't take it. Simple.


"Murder's been on the books for a while, yet we should ignore it because we have been unable to provide "full compliance"

Oy...seriously, I'm trying not to insult you, but there's really no way to respond to this without stating the obvious: your reading comprehension needs improvement.

*Nobody* is arguing that 'we should ignore' the ADA. Nobody. Even Mr. Hickey didn't go that far (he argued its scope shouldn't include private enterprise. I disagree with him FWIW).

Your analogy with murder is hopelessly invalid.


"List ten real life CA examples of a 2.25% graded sidewalk"

You're deflecting, which is why I ignored you the first time. 'neighbor' stated that everyone that doesn't comply with the ADA is a "lawbreaker" and "scofflaw". He|she should own that statement to its logical implications.

Is a business with a 2.25% graded sidewalk a "lawbreaker" and "scofflaw"?

Is a business that doesn't have staff that know a second language (in the case of the ADA, sign language) a "lawbreaker" and "scofflaw"?

'neighbor' needs to own his|her words. If 'neighbor' believes this, then he|she should own it. Simple.



I'll give you a little advice, and I sincerely hope you accept it: if you require people in the world to agree with you in lockstep, with no room for even nuanced differences, you are going to live a miserable life. Try listening and understanding; you'll be better for it.


4 people like this
Posted by owner's issue
a resident of Portola Valley: Portola Valley Ranch
on Jun 8, 2019 at 4:22 pm

"Mr. Johnson is the man *you embrace* as your preferred method of enforcement."

Another strawman - whoops - not a strawman! It's a lie.

Not once have I made any such claim.

I do love your style, however. When called on your sidewalk rhetoric, you insist it's a deflection. Nice job! And is 'snowflake' the new version of Godwin? Use it first and lose?

...

"I'll give you a little advice, and I sincerely hope you accept it..."

Allow me to share a little advice, and I sincerely hope you accept it: if you need 750 words and are still unable to support your falsehoods... consider a new thread.


18 people like this
Posted by peninsula resident
a resident of another community
on Jun 8, 2019 at 4:24 pm

In an effort to show that I'm a reasonable debater (unlike "neighbor" and "owner's issue"), I'll point this out:

In this 100+-post thread, at one point Mr. Hickey said this: "I wonder how many lawsuits it will take to overturn this law."

This could be construed to mean that he wants no ADA law at all (which I'll state again that I believe we need fair access to public businesses and government buildings, so I would not support the elimination of laws supporting fair access for the disabled). I would welcome clarification from Mr. Hickey, but even if he does support the complete removal of the ADA, he would be the only person who posted with this position, a far cry from claims made by 'neighbor' and 'owner's issue' that 'Menlo Park neighbors' are hostile towards the disabled.

Everything else I said stands.


2 people like this
Posted by owner's issue
a resident of Portola Valley: Portola Valley Ranch
on Jun 8, 2019 at 4:30 pm

"This could be construed to mean that he wants no ADA law at all..."

That's Hickey's take, and shows why most of us typically don't want to anywhere near his stand. Attacking the ADA without a solution (removing one the lawyer doesn't solve the problem of compliance) puts one precariously close to Hickey.

There needs to be a mechanism to get owners to make simple modifications over 30 years. I don't see anything offered above that will do so.


12 people like this
Posted by peninsula resident
a resident of another community
on Jun 8, 2019 at 4:37 pm


owner's issue wrote:
"750 words"

OMG, you counted the number of words. Obsess much?

I love the fact that I'm renting space in your head for free :)


14 people like this
Posted by owner's issue
a resident of Portola Valley: Portola Valley Ranch
on Jun 8, 2019 at 5:13 pm

Counting? nah.

Estimating words is a snap, almost second nature for a number of folks. Certainly far easier than being the one that needed to defend their rhetoric with 710 words.

(okay, *that* was a simple, handy tool...)


;-)


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