Judgment strains Oceano finances



The Oceano Community Services District is having difficulty fulfilling a court ordered legal judgment against it and may claim “unreasonable hardship” in an effort to spread required payments over months or years.

San Luis Obispo Superior Court Judge Charles Crandall awarded Pamela Dean, a former board member, $74,441 in legal fees in late June stemming from a lawsuit she filed against the district. However, the district allotted less than $40,000 for litigation costs in its budget and is scrambling to deal with the unexpected judicial ruling.

The district is in rough shape financially and its leadership had only recently been able to fathom the economic maelstrom it’s in. The CSD Board of Directors is scheduled to discuss how to deal with the legal judgment July 13, after New Times went to press.

“We have to look at each of the ways we can deal with this,” said an Oceano official, who said it might take a while to see how the situation will work out. “We have to figure out a way [to deal with the ruling] that’s best for the community.”

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