Connect with us

Business

Khosla’s price for beach access: $30 million

Published

on

Martins Beach in California has been at the center of a battle over private ownership and public access. Credit Jim Wilson/The New York Times

Martins Beach in California has been at the center of a battle over private ownership and public access. Credit Jim Wilson/The New York Times

HALF MOON BAY, Calif. (DIYA TV) — Vinod Khosla, the billionaire co-founder of Sun Microsystems, said in a letter to the State Lands Commission that an easement leading over his property—the picturesque setting of Martins Beach—would cost California $30 million. That price does not include the additional expense of road repairs, annual operations and maintenance.

Khosla’s lawyer, Dori Yob, presented the price in a letter which was submitted before the state Court of Appeal on Feb. 3, the governing body which is overseeing one of several lawsuits regarding access to the 89-acre property. Khosla purchased two parcels of land, including the beach, for $32.5 million in 2008. His proposed price was not well received.

“The $30 million figure is rather amusing,”  said Gary Redenbacher, a lawyer for Friends of Martins Beach, which says the state Constitution makes all beaches public property. “I don’t know if anybody would really take it seriously. He bought 89 acres for $32 million and is asking for $30 million for an easement over a road that is 2,500 feet long. That’s approximately 1 acre.”

Jennifer Lucchesi, executive officer of the State Lands Commission, said she was just as shocked as Redenbacher when she received the letter. She has since submitted it to the court as evidence in the pending case. The commission has proclaimed the tidelands Khosla claims are his are in fact owned by the state. Further, Lucchesi contents the commission has completed its own price evaluation of the easement, and the figure is far less.

Vinod Khosla, a Silicon Valley venture capitalist, bought the beach land in 2008 and cut it off from the public. Credit Jason Henry for The New York Times

Vinod Khosla, a Silicon Valley venture capitalist, bought the beach land in 2008 and cut it off from the public. Credit Jason Henry for The New York Times

“We have not seen any documentation or analysis supporting that $30 million value,” Lucchesi said. “Our own appraisal and other research indicates that the value of that easement is significantly less than that.”

The fights began after Khosla closed the only gate which provided public access to the beach, citing the costs of high maintenance and liability. There are 45 leased cabins on the property. The Friends of Martins Beach sued Khosla in San Mateo Superior Court, where Judge Gerald Buchwald ruled in Khosla’s favor — the judge said the beach was subject to the 1848 Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo, which ended the Mexican-American War and required the United States to recognize Mexican land grants. In layman’s, Buchwald ruled that the beach had been under private control long before laws were passed requiring public access to its coast.

The decision was ultimately appealed, and with the help of the Surfrider Foundation, Superior Court Judge Barbara Mallach ruled in 2014 that Khosla’s failure to obtain a coastal development permit before closing the gate was illegal, and ordered the gate be reopened.

That same year, the California Senate passed legislation which ordered the State Lands Commission to negotiate for a period of one year in an effort to come to terms with Khosla on finding a solution. The legislation said if a deal could not be struck within the one-year timeframe, that the commission would be permitted to acquire all or a portion of the property by eminent domain.

That year expired on Dec. 31, Lucchesi said. She added the commission will spend extra time in trying to come to terms, but “at some point the State Lands Commission will have to decide whether to proceed with eminent domain.”

Arts

Indian Ambassador, Shringla speaks to U.S. Congress about Kashmir

Published

on

AMB. Shringla speaks to congress about Kashmir | Diya TV News

WASHINGTON (Diya TV)  — Indian Ambassador to the U.S. Harsh Shringla met with members of Congress at a private roundtable briefing, hosted by Southern California Congressman Brad Sherman. Sherman, who has been a supporter of India, took to Twitter recently to share his concerns about Kashmir and said serious questions about Kashmir were asked at the briefing.

President Trump is being urged to fix the H1-B visa process and do away with country-specific limits, with the latest effort for reform being spearheaded by 60 U.S. business school deans and CEO’s.

In an earthquake, seconds matter. So on the anniversary of the deadly 1989 Loma Prieta earthquake that rocked Northern California, state officials announced the launch of America’s first statewide earthquake early warning system.

Tabla Maestro Zakir Hussain will be coming to Boston next month to perform at the Berklee India Exchange, where he will also be conferred with an honorary doctorate by the esteemed music school. A Zakir Hussain Scholarship at Berklee is also being established.

And we have incredible video of three kids from India rescuing their dog from a snake that’s equal parts courageous and nuts.

Ravi Kapur contributed to this report.

Continue Reading

Business

Federal Court rules Trump must turn over tax returns | Diya TV News

Published

on

Trump Tax Returns

NEW YORK (Diya TV) — A federal judge ruled President Trump must turn over eight years of his personal and corporate tax returns to Manhattan prosecutors, striking down the President’s argument that a sitting president cannot be criminally investigated. The ruling was quickly appealed and this case could end up in the Supreme Court to answer the constitutional question of whether presidents can be charged with a crime.

Meanwhile, the President celebrated a victory by FCC Chairman Ajit Pai, as a federal appellate court upheld most of the FCC’s repeal of net neutrality. It also ruled the FCC cannot preempt state net neutrality laws, meaning the rules of the road in states like California remain in place.

The U.S. House Foreign Affairs Committee announced their Asia-Pacific and Non-Proliferation Subcommittee will be holding a hearing asking State Department officials and human rights activists to chime in on Human Rights in Kashmir, the Tamils of Sri Lanka, Muslims in Assam and the human rights situation in Pakistan, which includes the Sindh Province.

Lockheed Martin announced they will build F-16 wings exclusively in India, helping in integrating Indian industry into the $165 billion fighter aircraft market.

Ravi Kapur contributed to this report.

Continue Reading

Business

Tech CEO Pradyumna Samal convicted of large scale H1B fraud

Published

on

Pradyumna Samal

SEATTLE (Diya TV) — Tech CEO Pradyumna Samal was convicted of large scale H1B fraud. The CEO of two companies that supplied workers to companies like Microsoft and Amazon plead guilty to using fake documents to get H1-B visas. The Indian national Samal was sentenced to seven years in prison for what federal authorities say “was the largest and most sophisticated H-1B visa fraud scheme we have prosecuted in Western Washington.” 

Inder Singh, a Los Angeles-based Indian American community leader, has died. He was 86 years old. Singh was involved in the inception of a number of Indian American non-profit organizations in the effort to build a stronger relationship between the U.S. and India. Indian Ambassador to the U.S. Harsh Shringla said on Twitter that Singh’s contributions have been “significant and his leadership will be greatly missed.”

Indiaspora launched ChaloGive.org, their first online giving campaign that runs October 2nd to the 8th. The goal is to increase levels of giving by the Indian diaspora, inspired in part by the success of Giving Tuesday in the U.S. and Daan Utsav in India.

Ravi Kapur contributed to this report.

Continue Reading

Trending

Diya TV , Inc. © 2017 All Rights Reserved