Legal loophole in Florida leaves annoyed West Palm Beach residents stuck with Trump
It doesn't look like former President Donald Trump's West Palm Beach neighbors will be getting rid of him anytime soon thanks to a legal loophole.
According to Palm Beach Daily News, the town attorney John Randolph determined that Trump can reside at the golf resort as long as he is classified as an employee.
The latest comes just months after West Palm Beach residents voiced their concerns about Trump living at the luxury golf club. Back in February, the former president clashed with his neighbors over a Declaration of Use agreement he signed in 1993. When the luxurious mansion was converted into a golf resort, it prohibited him from using the location as a private residence and barred him from living at the location just as a permanent resident.
Despite the agreement, Town Manager Kirk Blouin concluded that "the agreement doesn't specifically prohibit the ex-president from residing at the club."
Randolph also noted that the town's zoning code does allow for the private club to provide living quarters for a "bona fide employee.".
However, the determination has not stopped opposition. With Trump being allowed to reside at Mar-a-Lago as an employee, there are now concerns about how the legal loophole could lead to the former president allowing others to do the same.
Philip Johnson, the attorney representing Preserve Palm Beach expressed his concern about the determination.
"If officers of Mar-a-Lago LLC are permitted to reside at the club, then there's no limitation as to how many residents will be able to live there since the club controls the number of officers," Johnson said. "In other words, the town could not limit the number of residents. Does the council want Mar-a-Lago to be a multifamily residence?"
He added, "We feel that this issue threatens to make Mar-a-Lago into a permanent beacon for his more rabid, lawless supporters."
Johnson also noted that "giving Trump the power to determine who does and doesn't count as a Mar-a-Lago employee was irrational and that it would effectively permit him to create his own zoning laws."