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PLACERVILLE, CALIFORNIA
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ADA attorney forces out small business Pollock

PACKING UP — Jill Thurston, co-owner of the Pony Expresso on Pony Express Trail in Pollock Pines  carries a box of coffee flavorings to her car Feb. 23. The business owners, Jill and Harry, were forced out of their business by an ADA attorney. Democrat photo by Pat Dollins

PACKING UP — Jill Thurston, co-owner of the Pony Expresso on Pony Express Trail in Pollock Pines carries a box of coffee flavorings to her car Feb. 23. The business owners, Jill and Harry, were forced out of their business by an ADA attorney. Democrat photo by Pat Dollins

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From page A1 | March 02, 2012 | 155 Comments

It’s not the first time a small business has closed due to pending litigation. In small communities all over California businesses, mostly in older buildings built before the 1990 passage of the Americans with Disability Act, are closing because they aren’t able to completely comply with it.

Pony Espresso at 6401 Pony Express Trail in Pollock Pines, is one of the newest to close its doors, unable to afford an attorney to fight a federal law.

“Our bathroom is not compliant,” said Jo Thurston, who with husband Harry has owned the business for five years. “When people with disabilities come here we accomodate them, but this is closing down a lot of mom-and-pop places, turning historical areas into corporate America. My husband is going to paint houses and I don’t know what I’m going to do yet. ”

In December, a number of  Pollock Pines businesses received letters from Carmichael-based ADA attorney Scott Johnson indicating a lawsuit filed against them for ADA non-compliance and offering to settle out of court for a sum of money, a practice described by many victims as legal extortion and by critics as unethical.

While the law is designed to give disabled full access to public and private businesses, it has also become a lucrative business for attorneys like Johnson, who has filed more than 1,079 ADA lawsuits since 1996.

Many small businesses choose to settle out of court because, while they can accommodate people with disabilities, their buildings and parking areas can’t always be configured to comply with the stringent ADA laws. Some businesses believe they are ADA compliant because, state regulations and federal ADA regulations differ, leading to confusion about whether businesses are in compliance or not. In 2008, the ADA laws changed and the state is still scrambling to act on them.

Johnson, a quadraplegic, since a 1981 car accident, reportedly receives thousands of dollars from businesses who settle, some of which are on monthly payment plans. California state law allows disabled plantiffs to collect monetary damages. Federal ADA laws provide for the remediation of the problem and attorney fees.

Walt Harmon, owner of the historical Sportman’s Hall came under fire from Johnson.

“He wanted $10,000 to settle out of court and then he dropped it to $5,000. Then he claimed he needed to recover the court costs, but I told him I was going to be in compliance,” Johnson said.

Harmon made the modifications to the grade of the Sportsman’s Hall parking lot, changes to signage and  to the height of bathroom fixtures and said he was glad to make them.

“I was in compliance before and then law changed. There is no grandfathering in. I was able to make the changes myself because I had the equipment and I’m an industrial engineer, but it would cost most people $40,000 to $60,000,” harmon said.

Burger Barn owner Laurie Tackett isn’t choosing to settle out of court either.

“Scott Johnson sent us a letter in December with the non-compliance issues and said he would settle out of court for $4,000, Tackett said. “What’s to stop him or anyone else from coming around in two years and suing us again if we don’t fix it?”

Still, the lowest bid to fix the major problem, lack of a ramp for wheelchair access, has been $5,500. “We’ve explored it from every angle,” said Tackett. With a multitude of logistical problems, putting in an access ramp is no easy fix.

“One of the options is to create a new entrance and put a door on the side, but there isn’t supposed to be a separate handicapped entrance, so that’s out too,” said Tackett. “We lease the building and the owner is willing to go in halfway with us, but if it comes to restructuring the whole building, he would choose to sell and we’d be out.”

Three families would be out on the street without the business said Tackett. Johnson did not patronize the Burger Barn, located at 6404 Pony Express Trail.

“Almost every business in Pollock Pines was targeted, ” said Jeannie Harper, executive director, of the Community Economic Development Association of Pollock Pines. “And this isn’t the first time he’s done this in Pollock Pines.”

According to Harmon, Johnson didn’t patronize most of the establishments he sued.

“He has two young girls who take photos and bring them back to him,” Harmond said.

Johnson has filed more than  1,000  lawsuits from Truckee to Stockton, leaving a swath of closed businesses in his wake.

A protest was held in front of Pony Expresso on Feb.18 and Harper has scheduled a community meeting to discuss the ADA compliance law for March 15 with government officials and has invited state Sen. Ted Gaines and Congressman Tom McClintok to attend.

AssemblywomanBeth Gaines recently introduced two measures designed to curtail frivolous ADA lawsuits. One gives small businesses an opportunity to correct an ADA violation before a lawsuit can be filed and the other, AB 1879, requires the State Architect to compile a list of all federal and state disability access requirements and identify any conflicts between them.

“Lawsuit abuse and more regulations are not leading to greater access and compliance, which was the intended purpose of the state and federal access laws,” Gaines said. “…these landmark pieces of legislation have created an unintentional consequence — having businesses close their doors because of a great cost and limited options.”

For more information about California ADA lawvisit the Website at calchamber.com. Information on federal ADA requirements can be found on ada.gov.

Contact Wendy Schultz at 530 344-5069 or wschultz@mtdemocrat.net

LEAVE A COMMENT

Discussion | 155 comments

  • SodaWerksMarch 01, 2012 - 2:14 pm

    Scott Johnson has been doing this for years, and he will continue to do it as long as businesses keep spewing the attitude that they do not have to abide by ADA compliance. Businesses have had 10-20 years to comply and decided to refused, so Scott Johnson takes advantage of the arrogance of these business and building owners. As a disabled person, I find Scott's practices abhorrent, and his actions gives disabled people a bad rap. But we all know who Scott is, when he comes to the business, seriously, just do not let him come in. A business owner has the right to refuse service to anyone, and since Scott is only patronizing the business in an effort to sue them, just do not let him in the door. It is corrent that there are differences in Federal and State ADA laws, particularly in CA. But blame politicians and City Hall for that mess, should just have left the Federal guidelines in place vs. adding additional guidelines to existing legislation, only makes it difficult for any business owner to comply. Per Federal and State laws, the building owners are liable for non-compliance, not the businesses. Building owners in El Dorado County are known for not maintaining their buildings, potential new businesses looking to lease/rent a building in EDC should confirm before leasing if the building is up to code, which includes ADA compliance. No sympathy for businesses that are NOT ADA compliance, the whinning of these business owners only have themselves to blame. Now some moronic politician wants to add another AB that lets a business correct the non-compliance issues. Too late, and frivioulous legislation as there are already laws on the books that the buildings must be ADA compliant, period. Whereas Scott Johnson is the pus on the boil of society, and it is not like he resides in any of these counties he is targeting, but his actions may get businesses to realize, they MUST comply with ADA requirements. Business and building owners ARE NOT above the law and must comply. If you do not want Scott (and others who make an unethical living at suing businesses) then get your building in compliance. It is that simple. Yes, it will cost money, but guess what, businesses have had twenty years to comply. That is plenty of time to have gotten the building in compliance. It is an inaccurate statement to make saying ADA compliance is closing small businesses, it is the arrogance and greed of building owners and small businesses as to why they are having to close.

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  • ChelseaMarch 01, 2012 - 2:39 pm

    Not all businesses can afford to become compliant with these laws and should not have to. Of course people with disabilities should be able to access every business they choose, but to force a small town mom and pop shop to close down because they cannot install accessible restrooms? Wouldn't make more sense to ask the disabled to use the accessible restroom next door? Is it that hard? It's about compromise, and Johnson's only goal is to make money. He doesn't care about accessibility! Why should we let a guy like this get away with this bs? It is just another case of greedy people in our society trying to screw the world over to get as much as they can from themselves. Shame on Johnson, and shame on you for defending him.

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  • SodaWerksMarch 01, 2012 - 3:07 pm

    I am not defending Scott, in fact, quite the opposite. And if you could read correctly, as I stated, the law assigns the burden onto the building owners, businesses are caught in the middle. But if you are going into business, you have to educate yourselves, ADA compliance is the law. You cannot plead ignorance of the law. When selecting a facility for your business, you are responsible to make sure the building is up to code, just like an inspection before entering into a contract for purchase of a home. You have to confirm the building owner has the facility "ADA compliant", if not, keep walking and find another location that is ADA compliant. Maybe then the building owners will finally get the idea they are not above the law and will bring their buildings up to code. ADA compliance is just like having the electrical control panel up to code. This is not really no big deal, it is just business owners are whining as they did NOT do their homework before entering into an agreement with the building's owner. Why has so many Mom/Pop businesses across the country updated/upgraded for ADA compliance but EDC businesses have not? You are correct, Scott does not care about accessibility, only about suing and making a living at it, I believe they are called "Ambulance Chasers", but businesses and building owners only have themselves to blame for putting themselves into this non-compliance position and instead of just fixing the problem, they are whining and having a pity-party that someone is picking on them. I am a Mom/Pop business owner in EDC, and I am disabled and I am in full compliance of ADA - by requiring the building owner to make the necessary accomodations before I leased the building. I am NOT defending Scott, but businesses are letting Scott get away with this because businesses/building owners have not brought their buildings up to code for ADA compliance. Scott did not make the coffee shop close down, that was the business owner's decision. Shame on you for allowing businesses to continue to discrimate against PWD (people with disabilities).

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  • ChelseaMarch 01, 2012 - 4:13 pm

    So do you think that laws need to be followed 100% of the time with no questions asked? I don't. It's not that simple. Sometimes Laws are injust! I don't support blindly following laws that should not be there in the first place! Sometimes protesting unfair laws changes things! Look at civil rights! Look at our current situation with prop 8. I'm proud to stand against unjust laws, even if that means breaking rules sometimes.

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  • edkemperMarch 01, 2012 - 5:00 pm

    Chelsea, You do understand we are speaking of Civil Rights, right? Funny how a protected person feels others don't deserve the same protections they've been granted.

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  • SodaWerksMarch 01, 2012 - 7:17 pm

    Do you realize that you are saying it is okay to discrimate against PWD? Who is next in your book? Gays? Jews? Christians? Muslims? Are you racist as well? I fail to see how ADA is "unjust". Based on your comment, "following laws that should not be there in the first place" - seriously are you really that uneducated? It must be great to be an able-bodied person in this world, but you might want to really re-think your arrogance, as all it takes a split second (as in an auto accident) to find yourself in the same situation as other PWDs. You lack of compassion towards others, might produce some backlash in your own life, as one day, you might need the same type of help and it will not be there for you. Try spending a day in a wheelchair, and then maybe you will see just how wrong you really are.

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  • ChelseaMarch 01, 2012 - 8:54 pm

    Soda werks- why don't you drop the attacks and state your opinions without throwing out verbal assaults. We're grown ups here, can you keep up? For your information, I work directly with people with disabilities. I by no means think ADA is wrong. But I absolutely think ABUSE OF ADA is wrong! And that's what is d-bag is doing. Abusing the law that is supposed to be helping people who really need the support to gain equality. Asking every business in the state to fork over over the dollars to change is a waste of money, time and resources. That does not mean people with disabilities should go without. It simply means we need to work together as a community to fix problems and make places accessible, not attack every single business possible, as Johnson has done. That will get us no where.

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  • EdKemper is a TrollMarch 01, 2012 - 4:52 pm

    So I have to lay out tens of thousands of dollars for a modifications that you may never use so you can feel better about yourself? So that you can be babied? Really? Life isn't fair, get over it.

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  • SodaWerksMarch 01, 2012 - 10:39 pm

    Case in point, this is why we need ADA legislation. Next working on including PWDs to hate crime legislation. People as such is exactly of how I spoke before referencing the hatred able-bodied people have towards PWDs.

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  • edkemperMarch 01, 2012 - 6:27 pm

    Soda, > as I stated, the law assigns the burden onto the building owners, businesses are caught in the middle Obviously you've never even read the ADA. Both the business owner and the property owner are equally impacted. Now if the business owner chooses to sign a lease that puts all financial liability on them, that is their choice. Stop blaming the disabled for stupid private business practices.

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  • SodaWerksMarch 01, 2012 - 8:22 pm

    Ed, your comments to Chelsea about "civil rights" probably went over their head, but it was a good point. Yes, I have read the ADA legislation and several ensuing State ADA regulations addendums (FL, CA, TX), not only have I read it, but authored several sections. Correct, both owner and business are impacted, but the Federal guidelines states that the responsiblity lies with the owner of the property. And I made the same deduction as you with regards to a business owner has a choice as to whether they accept the liability or not.

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  • edkemperMarch 01, 2012 - 4:42 pm

    Why not close the restrooms to everyone and let everyone go next door to pee? Let's keep it equal.

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  • SodaWerksMarch 01, 2012 - 10:45 pm

    There is a reason they call Placerville, PeeTown.

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  • MartinMarch 03, 2012 - 5:18 pm

    Johnson, a quadriplegic, since a 1981 car accident, reportedly receives thousands of dollars from businesses who settle for ADA no compliance, some of which are on monthly payment plans. California state law allows disabled plaintiffs to collect monetary damages. Federal ADA laws provide for the remediation of the problem and attorney fees. I feel that legal extortion should be prohibited I feel sorry for Mr. Johnson but he has made life hell for a lot of people, I now feel that this man should pack it in, and live with his problem. He is like a vulture waiting for dinner, I am sure this man could make a living as a regular attorney he should hang his head in shame because he is not a nice person, he is using law to swell his wallet, not for the disabled just for his own benefit.

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  • edkemperMarch 04, 2012 - 2:12 pm

    Martin, > I feel sorry for Mr. Johnson but he has made life hell for a lot of people, Kind of like how hard African Americans made it for small business owners back in the 50's? I feel ya Martin. > I am sure this man could make a living as a regular attorney So please explain. You think he should go into another area of law? Perhaps an area he has no understanding in? Why shouldn't he be in an area he has special knowledge of? > he should hang his head in shame because he is not a nice person, I just want to understand your feelings. Are the business owners that have to date refused to comply with decades old Civil Rights law nice people or not? Sounds like you probably don't feel any civil rights worker is/was a good person. I guess all the one's assassinated deserved it, huh? > he is using law to swell his wallet, You mean like a store owner uses his business to put money in his pocket? Like a restaurant owner is using his business to put money in their pockets? Do you really feel qualified to decide what area of law any lawyer should work in? > not for the disabled just for his own benefit. He as well as any other moral and ethical lawyer fighting in this area of law benefits the disabled community more than the collective work of all the people paid to address these issues over the last 49 years. We see this differently because I need the access and you probably don't.

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  • edkemperMarch 01, 2012 - 4:33 pm

    There is not one disabled plaintiff that has ever caused the closedown of any viable business. However there are some illegal business owners that have chosen to close a marginal business instead of making it legal. I didn't read anything in the article that stated how much they earned running an illegal business for so many years. It's a shame we can expect balanced reporting.

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  • Greenwood BillMarch 01, 2012 - 4:44 pm

    Absolutely not true. Many businesses have been closed down by sharks like this up and down the state. And on top of it, the business had been inspected by the county and was given permission to operate. I smell troll and I'm betting it works for this scum lawyer.

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  • edkemperMarch 01, 2012 - 5:05 pm

    Billy, > the business had been inspected by the county and was given permission to operate. Wait, let me understand you. An overpaid county employee let someone to open an illegal business after paying fees for compliance checks and you feel the disabled are the crooks? Why aren't you going after the county who allowed them to open in the first place? The county made the business owner a target and you blame us? Very telling.

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  • Evelyn VeerkampMarch 01, 2012 - 5:23 pm

    Ed: Your point about the county's role and responsibility is valid. In the heat of the moment, we should not lose sight of that fact. Thank you for raising it.

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  • SodaWerksMarch 03, 2012 - 7:29 pm

    "Many businesses have been closed down by sharks like this up and down the state"... - really? Then list ten businesses that closed due to ADA legislation. Pony Espresso does not count, as they chose to close versus fixing the ADA compliance issue. You will need to provide the facts, not heresay or insuations...must be a fact.

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  • Evelyn VeerkampMarch 04, 2012 - 8:11 am

    Soda: 10 businesses ADA legislation closed: 1. A & W, Jackson 2. Chocolate Cottage, Newport Beach 3. The Galley Restaurant, Morro Bay 4. Greenbrier Inn, Oceanside 5. The Hungry Fisherman, Morro Bay 6. Indian Creek Bed & Breakfast, Plymouth 7. Kansas City Barbeque, Encinitas 8. Mock Brothers’ Saddlery, Yucca Valley 9. Thidwick Books, San Francisco 10. Roy’s Drive-In, Salinas No judgment is intended or inferred as to whether these businesses were fairly or unfairly targeted. Soda, you simply asked for a list of 10.

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  • Lena StiwardFebruary 12, 2014 - 3:59 am

    Dear Wendy Shultz, My business Indian Creek B&B is listed as being closed down due to an ADA lawsuit in these comments. This information is not correct as we have never been involved in any threatened or actual litigation ADA or otherwise. Can you please correct this information as it is negatively affecting my busines? Thank you, Lena Stiward Owner/Innkeeper

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  • EvelynFebruary 12, 2014 - 5:15 am

    Linda Stiward: THIS was the source of the apparent misinformation. (Scroll down about 60%). Indian Creek B&B looks like a lovely get-away; I'm glad to know your business was unaffected by ADA litigation.

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  • EvelynFebruary 12, 2014 - 5:19 am

    . . . P.S. Linda: If you wish, the offending comment -- which will still be found on an internet search -- can be deleted. Just say the word.

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  • edkemperMarch 04, 2012 - 2:15 pm

    Perhaps we can get a list of the number of businesses that have closed for other than ADA violations over the same period? Just to keep this in perspective.

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  • USCitizenTaxpayerJanuary 08, 2014 - 12:09 pm

    Please do not make general statements just to defend the undefensibility of your own statements. Why is it that individuals get into something because they have nothing else to do...wanting to play god...

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  • Just the factsMarch 01, 2012 - 2:28 pm

    Besides allowing the building owner time to correct a problem, the litigant must be directly affected as in present on-site. Professional legal letter writing on behave of themselves should not be a sanctioned as a form of code enforcement.

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  • Evelyn VeerkampMarch 01, 2012 - 3:24 pm

    This is a totally shocking abuse of regulatory power. In these dreadful economic times every effort should be made to assist small businesses, not execute them. The word "vulture" comes to mind, but to use it would be impolite.

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  • edkemperMarch 01, 2012 - 4:45 pm

    Evelyn, Who was the government moron that allowed this illegal business to open in the first place? Don't they have to have a business license and comply with the building codes? Isn't this like blaming the African American that is hanging from the tree?

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  • edkemperMarch 01, 2012 - 6:33 pm

    Evelyn Veerkamp Ed: Your point about the county’s role and responsibility is valid. In the heat of the moment, we should not lose sight of that fact. Thank you for raising it. Evelyn, Just think of how many private businesses have been exposed to costly litigation by the county. The county is also required to comply. How much do you think it's going to cost the taxpayers to bring the county itself into compliance? 38 years of illegal buildings. The disabled can't get hired but we still will have plenty of work to do. Terrible to put us in this mess.

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  • edkemperMarch 04, 2012 - 11:42 am

    Evelyn, > In these dreadful economic times every effort should be made to assist small businesses, Interesting stand. Feed money to illegal business owners and let the individuals fend for themselves. Again, the reason why we needed the ADA.

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  • Evelyn VeerkampMarch 04, 2012 - 11:59 am

    "Feed money to illegal business owners and let the individuals fend for themselves." Interesting take. I am bowing out of this conversation. All the best.

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  • Jim RiordanMarch 01, 2012 - 4:06 pm

    As an "incomplete paraplegic" and officially handicapped person due to two plane crashes (not my fault) and 25 broken bones, it is my opinion that POS Attorneys like Scott Johnson make pond scum appear appetizing. This person is hurting far more people than he is helping. Period. It is my opinion that instead of being a REAL attorney , practicing REAL law which requires brains and ethics, he is a user and abuser of the system simply "feeling sorry for himself" while legally extorting money from "low hanging fruit" through his threats and lawsuits as a way of life. In my opinion, he is taking a whining coward's way out instead of doing other legal work that could benefit others while working in handicapped accessible Courtrooms. It has always been my experience that if a truly handicapped person needs help, they will ALWAYS get it from honest hard working business owners who care. There have been many, many times business owners have accomodated my inability to easily climb stairs or walk long distances, by bringing what I ordered or needed to my vehicle for me. In a couple of instances even offering to carry me up a set of stairs. The list goes on and on. It is my hope this POS somehow loses all the money that he has, in my opinion, extorted from all the people he has hurt. Life has a way of making that happen. Me, I will never complain, I will simply find a way to accomplish what I want and ask for help when I need it. I do not want one dollar that I had to earn hurting someone else's business. I hope it all comes back to ya big time Scott, you whiner. Get over it , and join the thousands of veterans and others who "tough out" their situations and/or ask for help rather than, in my opinion, stealing money from others every day. Don't know how you sleep at night . . . I hope not well! Eventually, what you are doing WILL come back to you . . . and that cheering sound you'll be hearing will be me.

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  • edkemperMarch 01, 2012 - 4:50 pm

    I'm sorry you don't believe you deserve equal treatment. Then again, you don't deserve it. You let others fight your battles for you and then blame them for what little access they have provided you. Perhaps if you participated as much as a few others, people you don't like won't have to fight your battles. Just please don't bash those few that fight the fight and then park in "our" disabled parking spaces. I don't feel sorry for you because your disabled, it's because you have no self respect.

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  • ChelseaMarch 01, 2012 - 9:06 pm

    Ed, I admire Jim. He is not running from anything. He also does not feel entitled. He understands that people care, want accessibility for disabled people, and are willing to help out. He is obviously a good member of the community, disable or not, for taking responsibility for himself and not acting like the world owes him anything. He is just like anyone, regardless of disability, and isn't that what we want? Equality? By making such a big deal about needing all this businesses to change for them, disabled people like Johnson are creating their own inequality. Services and equal access are very important to people with disabilities, and rightfully so, but that does not mean society needs to change everything for them. Fitting into the community and making compromises are something we all have to do, disabled or not. Why is it wrong to ask people with disabilities to make SOME SMALL sacrifices and compromises in the community just like the rest of us? That's equality if you ask me.

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  • edkemperMarch 04, 2012 - 12:04 pm

    Chelsea, > Ed, I admire Jim. I'm glad he has his friend. > He understands that people care, want accessibility for disabled people, and are willing to help out. As long as they don't have to comply with civil rights laws and treat us equally. I do understand. I've met many that don't feel they deserve to be treated equally. And? > He is obviously a good member of the community, disable or not, for taking responsibility for himself and not acting like the world owes him anything. Aw, I see. He's a good person because he allows others to decide what he deserves and what he doesn't deserve. All while ignoring the law. He's obviously incapable of fighting battles for himself. Perhaps he should remember that he enjoys not being forced to live in an institution because many others have fought the battles that allow him to be such a great citizen of EDC. But I understand your point. If we are just happy with what others are willing to hand us, we are good members of the community. > He is just like anyone, regardless of disability, and isn’t that what we want? If he is not welcome in some businesses that don't want him around just because he's disabled, then he's like everyone else? Do you hear what you are saying? > Equality? What if we can breath the same air as you we are equal? You are so foggy in this argument you don't understand the term equality. > By making such a big deal about needing all this businesses to change for them, disabled people like Johnson are creating their own inequality. I guess we can say the same about African Americans? Women? Etc. Etc. Etc. I guess there was no need for equality for anyone. Interesting how you want to school me on equal rights when women have fought the same battle for themselves for many, many years. But you still feel we deserve less than you. You are a great friend of Jims. > Services and equal access are very important to people with disabilities, and rightfully so, but that does not mean society needs to change everything for them. You mean change the things they specifically built to keep us out? Seems society had to change because of your gender but to change for us is wrong. Do you understand what that opinion makes you? > Fitting into the community and making compromises are something we all have to do, disabled or not. Again, absolutely no grasp of history. Many others have gained the benefits of civil rights protections, including yourself, but you draw the line when it comes to the disabled. I totally understand you. You are exactly the person I've been fighting with for well over a decade. > Why is it wrong to ask people with disabilities to make SOME SMALL sacrifices and compromises in the community just like the rest of us? I am not asking for anything else. I just want what the rest of the community enjoys. Even though they are able to enjoy their space being illegal. Small sacrifices? You don't have a clue. Why is it you want me to compromise but you don't feel the community should compromise by complying with these state and federal laws? > That’s equality if you ask me. I know. That is why the courts are so ful of these cases. Friends like you. Let Jim enjoy your friendship. My goal is set a bit higher.

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  • USTaxpayerSickOfTreasonWithinJanuary 08, 2014 - 12:15 pm

    Lets all play god...get off of the subject at hand If any nation were equal: we wouldn't have to exist as 2 leggeds...would we. And how many other nations could comply with the ADA Obviously some of you know nothing of it...asking "how these non compliant businessees could be built?" You are not old enough to have graduated...get a life.

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  • KristinMarch 01, 2012 - 4:28 pm

    The worst part about this man is the fact that he does this as a business. He, most of the time as far as I know, is not the one that even goes to the business to find that it isnt handicap accesible. He sends many different people out to take pictures. So while he has people with no handicaps doing his dirty work for him, he sits at home and makes all the money. It is easier for a business to settle then to spend the time and money on an attorney. In competely understand businesses needing to be handicap accesible but if it was that much of an inconvenience, then there would be alot more lawsuits and not all with this one mans name on the plaintiffs side! Shame on him and I hope karma comes his way...soon!

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  • edkemperMarch 01, 2012 - 4:40 pm

    I am not here to defend Scott Johnson. But I think every disabled person should strive to be more like him. Funny how many bigots feel he's wrong but never seem to have a problem with using disabled access features when they can. With another dozen or two Scott Johnsons the disabled community might even have a chance at a meaningful life. It is telling that we feel the disabled are bad and then celebrate our veterans when these same people don't feel the returning disabled veterans should still have fight to get into a restaurant like this one. Please don't forget that for every one dead soldier returning from these wars, there are 8 disabled returning. How about we start trying to keep them out of this town also? Proud Americans, aye?

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  • Greenwood BillMarch 01, 2012 - 4:47 pm

    Go away troll. You are supporting this scum sucking bottom feeder. You and he both give the disabled a bad name.

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  • edkemperMarch 01, 2012 - 4:57 pm

    Bill, I'm not the one that feels the disabled are less than others. Scott might give the disabled a bad name in your eyes but you make all Americans look bad.

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  • edkemperMarch 01, 2012 - 4:55 pm

    Where is your outrage over the business owner operating an illegal business since they opened or since 1970? Let me guess, you wish we could go back to the good ol days when you didn't have a right to make the same income as a man. Funny how minorities that have already been protected by civil rights laws are so against others getting the same protections.

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  • Evelyn VeerkampMarch 01, 2012 - 5:18 pm

    Perhaps needing to be addressed is the question of BALANCE. Absolutely, the disabled need proper consideration. And most certainly that includes the large number veterans who, through no fault of their own, may never again have the opportunity to experience a "normal life" (whatever that may be). But - exactly what range of disabilities must business owners cater for? Think about it. Disabilities go far beyond matters of access. The financial collapse has crippled millions of Americans. Putting the economically wounded out of business does not speed recovery. Many demand that people be self-sufficient, that they stand on their own two feet. Putting the Thurstons out of business strips them of their shoes. But at least “access” is no longer a problem. The business has vanished. I do not think congratulations are in order.

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  • edkemperMarch 01, 2012 - 6:54 pm

    Evelyn, > Absolutely, the disabled need proper consideration. We don't want "proper consideration." We want equal access. > But – exactly what range of disabilities must business owners cater for? Think about it. Disabilities go far beyond matters of access. If they simply comply with the fairly simple ADA Guidelines, they don't need to "cater" to anyone. > The financial collapse has crippled millions of Americans. Excuse me. This has been the law since 1990. My memory is very good. There were decades of opulence and riches. To ask for special consideration for business owners are completely ignoring all the big profits they enjoyed when business was fat. If you think the business owner is struggling, try being disabled without any hope of getting a job. Most often because we can't get there or get in. > Putting the economically wounded out of business does not speed recovery. Yet the first cuts in budgets is against the disabled. Economically wounded is a joke. Especially when you shot your own foot off. I look at over 38 years they've enjoyed income and ignored these laws. Not our fault. > Many demand that people be self-sufficient, You mean like us? The business owners won't hire us because they are not accessible and you want us to be self sufficient? We've heard you. Now we've found our own work. Work that no private citizen or government worker is willing to do. Perhaps a better question is why we have to do what the government is required to do and already paid to do? > that they stand on their own two feet. Scott and the disabled are doing just that. Except many of us have to "stand on our own 4 wheels." > Putting the Thurstons out of business strips them of their shoes. For someone that has no feet, why would we care if they loose their shoes? > But at least “access” is no longer a problem. Bigotry at that location is also no longer a problem. > The business has vanished. I do not think congratulations are in order. No, but I'll bet a better restaurant with better owners will open in it's place. Keep in mind, if the property owner doesn't do the work and can find another ignorant renter, this may not end here. But if it isn't fixed and re-open, the owner should loose the building and let someone else buy it and bring it into the 21st century. Wouldn't it be something to bring the county into the 21st century also?

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  • TontoMarch 01, 2012 - 6:03 pm

    It's slim like this that turn the minority into the majority and cause great places to close and go out of business and all for one who admittedly makes his living off of these types of baseless law suits. Put a stop to him by filing suit on him and hold his feet to the fire, then return the sane thinking people to wipe him out.

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  • edkemperMarch 01, 2012 - 7:01 pm

    Tonto, I'm sure everyone is happy to have such a well educated and well rounded person speaking for them. I hope you never join my community. Interesting you want to hold the disabled's feet to the fire but are offended by us doing the same to business owners. Look up "equal."

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  • TontoMarch 02, 2012 - 7:26 am

    edkemper, the whole basis of this story is wasted on you, It has nothing to do with ADA issues, it's an attorney who makes his living off of businesses who can't afford to fight his threat of a law suit. He offers to settle out of court for money and no ADA issues will be filed. He doesn't even attempt to go to most of the places he just threatens businesses with a law suit. He is committing extortion and getting away with it as most will just pay, so look up crook and you might see the whole picture, but I doubt it.

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  • edkemperMarch 03, 2012 - 4:01 pm

    Tonto, How is this any different than your building department charging huge fees for "Plan Checks," Building permits, passing illegal construction inspections and issuing Certificates of Occupancy? Seems to me EDC officials have defined what extortion means. We don't do that kind of damage. It takes highly paid professionals to extort those kinds of rip-offs.

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  • J. OthersideMarch 01, 2012 - 7:11 pm

    Really, SodaWerks? "A business owner has the right to refuse service to anyone, and since Scott is only patronizing the business in an effort to sue them, just do not let him in the door." I can refuse to let the disabled in the door because I am afraid of being sued for ADA non-compliance? Evelyn, I think you nailed it: "But at least “access” is no longer a problem. The business has vanished." Thank you ADA, this act is certainly extending equal access to all. Keep defending it, Ed, it's a great piece of legal work, you should be proud.

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  • edkemperMarch 01, 2012 - 7:35 pm

    J, Notice I don't hide behind an alias? I'd say I am the only one that is proud of my stand between the two of us. I am also proud of a country that feels everyone has value. I do not look at the past and feel any minority that needed to have laws to protect them as bad people. I don't look at the past and love it when we were able to do despicable things to others because there were people there were no laws protecting them. You still support Jim Crow Laws. I don't. I think all laws should cover all of us equally. For every business that closes, another 2 open. How many businesses were there when the Civil Rights Act of 1964 passed? Want to bet whether there are more businesses now than there were then? Seems to me, equal rights laws have been good for businesses across the board. Not as you claim, they are far better off now than then.

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  • Evelyn VeerkampMarch 01, 2012 - 8:57 pm

    Ed: Look at all the empty stores, shops & buildings around this county - and, elsewhere. I wish it were true that "for every business that closes, another 2 open." While understanding the principle upon which you stand, practically speaking your "victory" is missing something.

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  • SodaWerksMarch 01, 2012 - 11:09 pm

    Evelyn, the empty stores, shops & buildings you mentioned are closed due to lack of busines. 90% of revenue on Main St is tourism, 10% revenue on Main St is from the local community. I have a small business on Main St in Placerville, business is bad, tourism is down, the local community does not support the local small businesses and we have a City Hall that is anti-business and difficult to work with. That is why businesses are shutting down, closing, thus the empty buildings. Have you seen the decay on Main St? Business owners will not state how bad, but amongst ourselves, it is very worrisome. Two more businesses will be shutting their doors on Main St next month, both are trying to sell, but will probably just close. And another big box chain store has petitioned to open a warehouse store in Placerville. That is why Mom/Pop small businesses are closing. Not because of any regulation or any ADA compliance issues or any ADA plantiff suing a business for non-compliance. You might want to try and be a little more in-tuned with the local community and the facts before making false statements as such.

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  • Evelyn VeerkampMarch 02, 2012 - 7:04 am

    SodaWerks: I fully understand why businesses are shutting down on Main Street - and, elsewhere. No part of my response suggested that this relates to ADA issues. Simply, there is no evidence that shutting down one business - for ANY reason - leads to the opening of two more.

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  • edkemperMarch 02, 2012 - 12:55 pm

    Evelyn, If all you can see and understand is the last 3 years, you are correct. My "victory" would be shared by all business owners if they were just legal.

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  • edkemperMarch 02, 2012 - 2:54 pm

    Michael, > I hate debating with bitter folk, Trust me, neither do we. But I'm willing to put up or shut up. Let's have an official debate with your county supervisors and building department? In a public forum. > but the California Department of General Services and California Building Standards Code (Title 24) have STATE mandated accessibility requirements which parallel the ADA requirements as more restrictive or equal. They also claim not to discriminate. And? > From the website: “State and local officials do not have the authority to enforce the ADA on behalf of the Federal government.” You need to read our state laws and case law. You might start with the licensing of architects and contractors. Their license mandates designing and building to all applicable laws. The ADA is one of those laws. You may want to read the laws. Start with the Government Code Sections: 54953.2 & 4500 & 4450 & 4450 (d) & 4459 & 11123.1 & 6311 & 14628 (d)(2) & 14629 (d)(2) & 14630 (d)(2) & 8299 Sorry I got tired of doing your research for you. But this ought to keep you reading (if you can) for a while. This goes to show that not everything you read on any particular state website is legally accurate. > The local building officials, whether City or County, are enforcing the State of California Standards for Accessible Design. Before writing anymore of this garbage, perhaps you might want to read the references I provided above. You will find you are patently wrong. > Maybe some of that negative energy can be used for good and submit proposals for grants to small businesses, This is also offensive. I retired from my private business and no one ever offered to pay for my business. Do you understand what "private business" means? > I’m sure Mr. Bitterpants Sorry, I have no idea who this is. > Who here thinks he has the guts? I don’t. For that matter, why don't you do this work, for free? Why do you expect everyone else to do this work but not you? Stop telling us what to do and start showing us by example? But you have to do this without another job or other income. Just to keep it equal, know what I mean? The most offensive thing is that you have no idea what is facing you, as a taxpayer. If you did, you might not have time to complain to me. Just think how much you are going to pay to bring all state, county and city facilities into compliance? You can't name one school or college built since the ADA that is compliant. Not one courthouse. Pretty much nothing was built legally. Which means you have to pay twice for the same facility. You don't have a clue as to how widespread this is. You will.

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  • EDO24March 02, 2012 - 11:09 am

    You don't hide behind an alias? I think by now we all know your real name, Scott Johnson!

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  • curiousMarch 02, 2012 - 11:27 am

    Why would Scott Johnson pose as "edkemper"? Agenda not clear. http://www.mtdemocrat.com/opinion/rubicon-trail-foundation-proud-of-purchase/

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  • barf2010March 01, 2012 - 10:03 pm

    Hey Scott. Want to really mess this up ? If you are reading these responses, it is my opinion that the El Dorado Co. courthouse is not truly ADA compliant. Why don't you go sue the county, that should be interesting.

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  • SodaWerksMarch 01, 2012 - 11:11 pm

    You are correct, City Hall is not ADA compliant, Main St is not compliant. And no agenda items on the docket for the City Council to address any of it.

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  • edkemperMarch 02, 2012 - 1:00 pm

    Barf and Soda, I am well aware of El Dorado County. You might want to do a little more research. The new Courthouse was built because the old courthouse isn't accessible. The new Courthouse (the county) was sued over it being illegal and they are, under a court approved settlement, required to make it compliant. So barf is correct, as far as he went. Soda, you are also right. The county will face more and more lawsuits until they learn to read. Even the judges don't know what a civil right is. The taxpayers will be paying higher taxes because they elect ignorant representatives.

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  • MichaelMarch 01, 2012 - 10:16 pm

    The Americans with Disabilities Act is not a code issue, it is a statute law enforced by the Department of Justice...i.e. courts of law. The county inspectors who enforce Building Standards (Title 24 in California) do NOT enforce, review, comment or have any jurisdiction over ADA issues. Therefore did not allow an "illegal" business to open it's doors to the public. As for the opening an "illegal" business comment, I believe this source of language seems to be rooted in some sort of anger or bitterness. Most small business owners are ignorant of many issues when opening a new business...many open a business based on an expertise or love of a subject that could be mutually beneficial to the local community and economy. There is no prerequisite that a small business owner have an MBA in Business Management, nor a law degree to understand the pitfalls of potential lawsuits from ambulance chasers such as Mr. Johnson. What mechanism does the state or county have in place to inform folks of issues such as these. If you are opening a restaurant, the County Health Dept. tells you exactly what you need to do to be compliant with local and state health codes. The assessor's office tells you what you need to do for licensing and tax issues, etc. etc...but who sets the new small business owner straight on ADA compliance issues? State Regulations dictate that building inspectors do NOT and CANNOT advise on ADA issues because of the Federal jurisdiction with the DOJ. So why bash these good people as evil-doers is my question? Ignorance comes to play here, and unfortunately so comes the predators.

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  • SodaWerksMarch 01, 2012 - 11:18 pm

    Actually in the City of Placerville, the building inspector is adding all ADA issues to the punch list given to a busilness before opening. Most small businesses have already been advise of their need to become ADA compliant. In addtion, the City of Placerville's website has a white paper on ADA compliance issues, Dept of Health only inspects food establishments and issues regarding sanitation, food prep, refridgeration, etc. They typically do not handle ADA issues, it is the building inspectors and they do add ADA compliance to the punch list. As well, the City of Placerville does meet with small business owners on Main St monthly and does advise and reminds businesses to bring their businesses/buildings into compliance. So even though a prospective small business owner may not know about ADA issues in the beginning, but at some point in the process they have been informed. As well, we all know who Scott is and what he has been doing and have been monitoring his activities. And ignorance is not a legal defense.

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  • edkemperMarch 02, 2012 - 1:21 pm

    Have you ever considered reading the laws before you comment on them? I believe you will find that the ADA was incorporated into CA state law years ago. Which means every state and local government entity is required to enforce the ADA. Thankfully, the courts are better informed. Now to you assuming that every business owner is ignorant. Let's look at opening a restaurant. Negotiate a lease. Building department for plan checks. Negotiating with contractors. Getting through the health department requirements for food service. Arranging for supplies and food. Setting up bank accounts. Setting up with the State Franchise Board. Setting up Worker's Compensation Insurance. There have got to be a hundred other things I've missed. Now let's speak of awareness of current affairs. Has anyone reading this every heard of the ADA and the lawsuits that are in every media source known to man. But they are to ignorant to address the ADA in their business. Okay. As for what the county does to inform business owners? Who cares? You voted for your clowns that run your county. Besides, the Chamber of commerce is supposed to represent business owners. They also fail. So? > State Regulations dictate that building inspectors do NOT and CANNOT advise on ADA issues because of the Federal jurisdiction with the DOJ. You are so wrong, you need to open a business in your county. Why your elected officials don't inform you? Seems you don't understand I have power over them. You do. I just get to sue and collect damages for your professional political failures. Ignorance seems rampant in your county. Judging from the lawsuits over this subject, it appears it's not limited to elected officials.

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  • MichaelMarch 01, 2012 - 10:27 pm

    Direct cut / paste from the Department of Justice ADA website: "Complaints under both title II (public entities) and title III (private entities) can be mediated. Disputes involving barrier removal or program accessibility, modification of policies, and effective communication are most appropriate for mediation. Through its program, the Department refers appropriate ADA disputes to mediators at no cost to the parties. The mediators in the Department of Justice program are professional mediators who have been trained in the legal requirements of the ADA by the Key Bridge Foundation. The Department's program has already resolved many ADA disputes quickly and effectively." It doesn't sound like Mr. Johnson offers his targets this option...

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  • edkemperMarch 02, 2012 - 1:24 pm

    Michael, > Through its program, the Department refers appropriate ADA disputes to mediators at no cost to the parties. You obviously have no experience in this arena. This service is not free and does cost both plaintiff and defendant. The federal courts also offer the same service.

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  • Freedom FoundMarch 02, 2012 - 1:08 am

    There is viable remedy for those facing legal issues without having to hire an attorney. Discussions occur at savingtosuitorsclub dot net Post your question and someone will be with you shortly. ;-)

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  • edkemperMarch 04, 2012 - 12:10 pm

    Freedom Found, You do understand that these websites are attorneys looking for your business? They are not interested in ending these lawsuits. They want your money to defend you. When they are finished, you have a huge legal bill and you still have to make the changes. If you have enough money left over. How many of the businesses that close because of the lawsuits are closed because they are sued and how many of them are closing because of the cost of their own attorneys "fighting for them?"

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  • Business OwnerMarch 02, 2012 - 11:21 am

    The problem is not just Johnson. The root of the problem is the State of California. This State has no entity that exists to assist existing business owners, or those opening a new business in an existing building, with the Federal and State ADA laws or the conflicts that exist between State and Federal. When I received my Johnson letter I was confident that we were ADA accessible. But I quickly learned there's a difference between being accessible and being compliant and I had to learn that on my own. No handicap person had ever experienced a barrier in my business. We had the handicap parking, the sloped entry the wide doors, the counter at the correct height and the large bathroom. But, our toilet was off by half an inch, the slope of the entry was off by 1/4 of an inch and our parking spot was up to the previous law and not the latest one that went into effect in 2007/2008. So even though none of those things would have been an actual barrier, because of the State of California, someone like Johnson could have sued for $4000 per alleged infraction. I would like to hear anyone claim they experienced a barrier because of a 1/4 inch slope difference. Does a small motel in a small town really need to spend tens of thousands of dollars to install and maintain an elevator lift in their small pool that may be used once or twice in a years time, if that? And how can a small business get up and running if they have to factor in a pool elevator upon building? That pool doesn't get built which removes it for 98% of the customers for fear of being sued over it's lack that only benefits 2%. Do businesses who are unaware of their lack of compliance really need to spend thousands of dollars on a lawyer who makes his living on drive by lawsuits rather than that money going towards the upgrades they could complete? All of this is the fault of the State. Not the businesses. When you open a business in an existing building you have the county telling you their regulations, you have the fire department telling you their regulations. What you don't have is anyone giving you the State's ADA regulations. California makes business owners fend for themselves in this area and its not like the requirements are all that easy to find. Parking spaces, for example. Federal ADA requirements have no specific requirement on the color of the lines. California does. If your search leads you to the Federal requirements and you follow those requirements, California says that someone, who never even has an interest in entering your business as a customer, can sue you for $4000 without warning. Tell me that makes any sense. Every business should be handicap accessible. But as far as the law is concerned, attempts to be accessible should be taken into consideration on behalf of the business owner regarding any potential lawsuits. I challenge anyone to tell me that any business that is handicap accessible, yet unaware of its lack of "compliance to the fraction of an inch" by State regulations, doesn't care about handicap access or that any business should be sued over a 1/4 of an inch. And all it takes is a few minutes of research to learn that there are lawyers who will take advantage of a fraction of an inch in this state. One lawyer who came up in my research sued businesses in Southern California for tens of thousands of dollars but his own office, by his own admission, was not ADA compliant or even handicap accessible. California is unique in the way it allows enforcement of ADA laws by lawsuit only. When I tried talking to the county about ADA laws and finding someone CASp certified to help us, I hit a brick wall. A business owner should be able to turn to the county they are doing business in for this type of help. So yes, business owners, in California, are the growing victims of California ADA laws and lawyers like Johnson who take advantage for personal gain. I have experience with Johnson, he doesn't even bother to enter 1% of the businesses he sues and because of California law, he isn't required to. Changes need to be made to California law and yes, businesses need more protection from lawyers like Johnson.

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  • edkemperMarch 02, 2012 - 1:39 pm

    Business owner, > The root of the problem is the State of California. You are partially correct. The state has many, many employees and administrative staff working on/in the area of law. The State Architect. The Building Standard's Commission. They recently created a new Board on Disabled Access. What you also fail to mention is that the disabled have absolutely no meaningful involvement in any of these programs. We have the non-disabled in charge. Perhaps you should direct your anger and complaints to them? In fact I'll bet your county even has something similar. A disability Advisory Committee. But they have no authority to make any meaningful changes. They are mostly volunteers who no little about what the laws require. But you go ahead and continue to blame us. Equal access to the disabled has been required since 1968. The Rehab Act of 1973 required every government entity to inspect and identify every barrier and when they would remove them. Then there are a few other minor changes made, like starting the fines for non-compliance at $100. Then it became $250 because the damages didn't get the attention of business owners. It went to $1000. It is now $4,000. Then the ADA was passed in 1990. As for CASp members? They are listed on the state website. I can understand how one could ignore them also. You don't have any real idea what Johnson does or what barriers he faces. You've made that clear. We are at fault because we are disabled. Proud Americans like you are why our newly disabled veterans are not welcome in your town or your county. They weren't even born when equal access was required.

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  • Jim RiordanMarch 02, 2012 - 11:31 am

    Thank you Evelyn and Chelsea for your kind comments. It seems to me Mr. Kemper is so buried in his bitterness that he fails to observe the obvious. If he got his wish and many more bottom feeders like Johnson were to show up at small bsuinesses and restaurants, the owners of such businesses would begin treating even the most friendly handicapped persons as a perceived threat rather than someone they would choose to help. And to his statement about not being able to find work due to inacessability, while true for many jobs, there is still work out there for someone who can work at home using a keyboard. Of course you need to stop crying in your beer and seek it.aiouiplac Vendeans

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  • edkemperMarch 02, 2012 - 1:50 pm

    Mr. Riordan, > the owners of such businesses would begin treating even the most friendly handicapped persons as a perceived threat rather than someone they would choose to help. You mean like back you used to be able to keep African Americans out that just wanted to come into your restaurant for a meal but were refused? Why we needed civil rights protections for them? We've seen numerous minorities that had to go get their own civil rights protections because of the way you treated them. We are just the latest identifiable group that you hate and blame for every failure of your own community. Okay. > And to his statement about not being able to find work due to inaccessability, while true for many jobs, there is still work out there for someone who can work at home using a keyboard. So I should get a job working out of my house because you don't want illegal barriers to be removed. Let me guess, you don't make a living out of your house either? I'm happy to know you are better informed about what we are able to do than I am. It would make you very happy if we'd just stay in our houses and quit bothering you. Another proud American.

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  • AlmostMarch 03, 2012 - 7:15 am

    Agree. Not being handicapped, it would insensitive, discriminatory and down right evil if I led with my chin in saying the same. An advocate is a person who champions solutions and promotes awareness and clearly there are other agendas in play. Code enforcement through litigation and personal gain by those who were never directly affected is the root problem.

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  • edkemperMarch 04, 2012 - 12:19 pm

    Almost, > Code enforcement through litigation and personal gain by those who were never directly affected is the root problem. Well, sort of. That is what we have been left with. Initially, we hoped that just simply asking a business owner to become compliant should have been enough. It wasn't. Then we started fighting these battles in Small Claims Court where the costs of litigation would have been extremely limited. But the Small Claims Court judges also didn't believe we deserved what the law mandated. So we resorted to hiring lawyers. Then business owners started hiring lawyers to try to get them out of having to comply. But I totally understand why you would blame us for what you (you meaning anyone that does not believe in equality) have created. The few of us that are willing to expose our chin definitely show one reason why many others are reluctant. Just read the bigotry and hate in this one story and the following comments. EDC is a proud place. Just not necessarily supportive of the Red, White and Blue.

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  • AlmostMarch 04, 2012 - 1:33 pm

    Eddie, no blame - just identifying the root problem which is a failure of regulation. Equal access is one thing, profiteering by the directly unaffected is quite another. Quite the cottage occupation...

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  • edkemperMarch 04, 2012 - 1:58 pm

    Almost, We're just going to have to agree to disagree. > Eddie, no blame – just identifying the root problem which is a failure of regulation. I must be missing something. CA law required equal access since 1969. Federal Law required equal access since 1964. Then the Rehab Act of 1973. Then came the ADA in 1990. There are plenty of regulations on the books. Just private parties and government officials that have failed to implement them. Perhaps because they continue to put non-disabled people in charge of the subject. How many people do you think we've paid over the last 49 years to implement the regulations? Since they have to date been unwilling to enforce them, what choice do we have but to do the work ourselves? > Equal access is one thing, profiteering by the directly unaffected is quite another. Quite the cottage occupation… But the cottage industry has been created by the non-disabled AND private business owners. They refused when we asked nicely. They refused when we elevated it to the Small Claims Court where they could control the litigation costs. Now they still refuse even though they know if they get caught it's going to be expensive. Then when they are sued they hire attorneys that are paid to create billable hours for their firm. One cottage industry has become the defense firms. But that isn't my problem. I can't control what business owners decide to do. Except when it comes to violating these laws. The cost isn't under my control. The other cottage industry has been in hiring non-disabled people to address disabled affairs. How has that worked over the last 49 years? You want to blame the one group that has absolutely no control. Okay.

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  • Jim RiordanMarch 02, 2012 - 11:50 am

    In case anyone wonders, "aiouiplac Vendeans" found at the end of my last post, is Latin for : "exit comment box before typing in Captcha code" . .

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  • edkemperMarch 02, 2012 - 1:51 pm

    Jim, Funny how you can speak Latin but can't read english.

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  • MikeMarch 02, 2012 - 8:47 pm

    Ed what crawled up your butt?

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  • dwayne the quadMarch 02, 2012 - 11:54 am

    Yes every is right on this. There should only be steps for thoes who can walk. The tables should be 36" tall with no chairs. Now should slould slove all the law suits. Now down to the real stuff. I am a quad disabled person so does that give me the right to sue an owner because there is a knob not a leaver, or the restroom stall is 1/2"from being leagl? And all this state law is surpassed by ferderal law any way. But I was a avid supporter of our great town of Placerville for over 30 years. Now that I am disabled I still support the town if I can get in or not. I belive the only party that has not signed in to this discussion is the county! they do give the OK to operate and let the buiness hang out to dry. It is true the law is 20years old, so it is time to play catch up. Scott is doing right by being the law since the goverment will not, But his method and pocket tell otherwise. We sould be working together not pointing the finger. And yes Scott needs to be stoped. For thoese that feel they are owed something for being disabled shame on you and others should look at you differently for that. The rest of us just want to eat and drink, or get a shirt or some thing.

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  • edkemperMarch 02, 2012 - 2:12 pm

    Dwayne, > I am a quad disabled person so does that give me the right to sue an owner because there is a knob not a leaver, or the restroom stall is 1/2″from being legal? Yup. However I have never seen or read a case where these minor problems were the majority of the suit. Yes those things would be listed also in the suit but there are far greater barriers in that facility. > And all this state law is surpassed by ferderal law any way. See. You really need to learn what the law says and means. At the very least, what it requires. The federal law in this case does not override State law. The federal law mandates that the state comply. It's been that way since the Rehab Act (almost 40 years) and the ADA (over 20 years). You might want to update your reading list. > But I was a avid supporter of our great town of Placerville for over 30 years. Now that I am disabled I still support the town if I can get in or not. Then you don't deserve the protections of our civil rights. I don't have a problem with that. However, when I come to visit, I'm not as willing to let them walk all over me. But that is your right. > I belive the only party that has not signed in to this discussion is the county! They won't because they'd have to admit liability or they'd have to prove how ignorant and illegal they are. > they do give the OK to operate and let the buiness hang out to dry. Not any more. They require compliance with both state and federal law for a medical marijuana dispensary to open. Of course that can't happen. But it's interesting they can so easily pick and choose which laws they want to use to get to their own agenda. Ignorant citizens allow them to do so. I'm not speaking in support of medical marijuana, but I am supporting of application of all applicable laws. > It is true the law is 20 years old, so it is time to play catch up. Okay, now we agree. > Scott is doing right by being the law since the goverment will not, But his method and pocket tell otherwise. Please explain. You have no one in your county doing the work. And Scott (and other disabled litigants) are the only one's gaining access for us. But we're somehow wrong. > We sould be working together not pointing the finger. Yet your county won't hire us to do this work. Sounds like a problem for you, not us. We'll get the work done one way or the other. We'd prefer to work from the inside, but that isn't offered to us. > And yes Scott needs to be stopped. Easy enough. Comply with decades old law. > For those that feel they are owed something for being disabled shame on you No my friend, shame on you. If you feel we are wrong for asking for nothing more than what everyone gets, you are truly more disabled then me. > and others should look at you differently for that. Especially when they have to write me a check. So? Do I really feel bad that bigots don't like me? Not! > The rest of us just want to eat and drink, or get a shirt or some thing. Probably buying those things in businesses that the rest of us have already sued so you'd be able to go there. You and I will have to disagree. I don't believe I am less worthy than anyone else just because I ride a chair.

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  • ??March 02, 2012 - 12:38 pm

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Edmund_Kemper edkemper???

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  • MarkMarch 02, 2012 - 1:48 pm

    Similar mental stability, could be a match.

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  • AlmostMarch 02, 2012 - 2:04 pm

    Nice try. Actually, it is Dr. Ed Kemper is a disabled "advocate" specializing in ADA who lives in Sacramento County with a number of lawsuits to his credit.

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  • AlmostMarch 03, 2012 - 7:17 am

    So be sure to use your real name and please include your full business address to expedite the process. Best of luck!

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  • Greenwood BillMarch 03, 2012 - 10:14 am

    Boy that explains a lot. He is actually one of these bottom feeding scum suckers! Stay in sacto theif, we don't want scum suckers up here able-bodied, disabled, blue, green or purple. Your kind is not welcome here.

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  • edkemperMarch 04, 2012 - 2:22 pm

    ??, No wonder you write under two question marks. I've enjoyed for years people googling my name and finding Edmund Kemper's information and thinking that if it was me I'd have this kind of access to the internet. Smile

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  • ???March 04, 2012 - 2:49 pm

    A questionable / sordid past limits internet access???

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  • MichaelMarch 02, 2012 - 2:14 pm

    I hate debating with bitter folk, but the California Department of General Services and California Building Standards Code (Title 24) have STATE mandated accessibility requirements which parallel the ADA requirements as more restrictive or equal. From the website: "State and local officials do not have the authority to enforce the ADA on behalf of the Federal government." The local building officials, whether City or County, are enforcing the State of California Standards for Accessible Design. ADA is and will always will be a Federal Civil Law issue and I submit Mr. Bitterpants is plainly preying on good people, period. Maybe some of that negative energy can be used for good and submit proposals for grants to small businesses, or write legislation to provide earmarks on some of those billions of infrastructure dollars the Fed's are handing out to aid good people in making this country accessible to all. I'm sure Mr. Bitterpants has the legal expertise and knowledge to make a difference and improve life for those with disabilities in a positive way, leave this place better than you found it...right? Who here thinks he has the guts? I don't.

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  • SodaWerksMarch 02, 2012 - 9:17 pm

    Michael: The local and state officials do enforce the ADA on behalf of the Feds, whether it is legal or not. When you submit your business operations plans to the City for approval a site inspection is required, a building inspector comes in and reviews the building, if the building is NOT ADA compliant, the local inspector writes the ADA violations on your punch list and must be resolved before doors to the business are open. So yes, currently in EDC local building inspectors enforce the ADA compliant in public buildings. Maybe the "website" states they are not suppose to, but they DO inspect ADA compliance for both Federal and State regulations. And if a State regulation undermines a Federal regulations, then the building inspector tells you to do what it is they want. I agree it is not being done correctly, but that is how it is done in EDC.

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  • edkemperMarch 03, 2012 - 4:21 pm

    Soda, How about you identify the newest commercial facility you know of that the county has approved and let's go look at whether it's compliant or not. I bet you give them far more credit than they deserve.

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  • SodaWerksMarch 03, 2012 - 4:42 pm

    Ed, it you do not know which building that is, then you are not as informed as you would like everyone to believe. I know which buildings are next up and it should be interesting as many are already on the side of preserving the historical aspects. And you would not know what credit I would or would not give anyone. But you can contiue to "sit" there from the sidelines, personally I get involved in an effort to resolve the issue. You know "part of the solution, not part of the problem". Anyone can sit on the sidelines and spew venom, but I get involved to help make the change. It is interesting the opinions you have written here, yet, never seen you at a City Council meeting, Chamber of Commerce, any of the Business Associations meeting, except for your mouthpiece, I see little more that you offer to PWD or to the human race as a whole. I do not sit on the sidelines and bitch about it, I get up and do something. More than I can say you have ever done, personally keep me out of your wranglings with the others, I prefer to be more constructive in my actions.

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  • edkemperMarch 02, 2012 - 2:16 pm

    Almost, Yep. I'm disabled not a closet bigot. I don't have any reason to hide. Also I am not undereducated.

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  • J. OthersideMarch 02, 2012 - 8:04 pm

    Excuse the response delay Ed, I had a wardrobe malfunction with my klansman's hood.... The comparison to the civil right struggle of minorities demeans what they had to go through for equality. I don't recall ever seeing a burning wheelchair or torched guidance cane on a disabled person's lawn. It is a totally ludicrous comparison. This "enforcement" of the ADA does the exact opposite of what was intended. It makes it certain that disabled people will indeed be treated differently. I have spent time with more than a few disabled people over the years, most recently a wheelchair bound mother on my son's little league team. Most of these folks specifically and very vocally did not want to be treated any differently and absolutely did not want to demand special accommodations from others. When they needed help I and others gave it willingly and gladly and were rewarded with nothing but gratuity. After reading your posts, however, I will be sure to rethink that voluntary effort unless it is someone I know well. How ignorant I've been exposing myself and my family to this nonsense, especially without my hood. Does it cost a business owner to allow access to Women, Blacks, Irish, Gays, Elderly, or any other disadvantaged or protected group? ADA clearly states that in order to bring a suit a plaintiff must have legal standing. In order to have legal standing a plaintiff must meet these qualifications: 1) they must meet the definition of "disabled" 2) they must have been to the facility and experienced discrimination 3) they must have intent to be at the facility in the future I'm really looking forward to the interpretation of #3 for businesses like the Pony Expresso. Oh wait a minute, that won't be a problem any more.....Guess it does work after all.

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  • edkemperMarch 03, 2012 - 1:24 pm

    J, > Excuse the response delay Ed, I had a wardrobe malfunction with my klansman's hood…. I totally understand. It takes decades to shed the sheets. > The comparison to the civil right struggle of minorities demeans what they had to go through for equality. You are so cute. Trying to explain discrimination to me. You bring a smile to me face. > I don't recall ever seeing a burning wheelchair or torched guidance cane on a disabled person's lawn. Neither do I. Perhaps we can't get to your trees because of lack of access? > It is a totally ludicrous comparison. I know. How dare Congress name these laws Civil Rights. How stupid can they get? And then the gall that I would perpetuate the promise. > This "enforcement" of the ADA does the exact opposite of what was intended. Huh? You mean holding bigots feet to the fire? Forcing them to stop their illegal operations? How dare us. > It makes it certain that disabled people will indeed be treated differently. Only by bigots in print. These laws make it much easier to flush out those that choose to discriminate. They make it much easier to stop the practice. But I totally understand your confusion. > I have spent time with more than a few disabled people over the years, most recently a wheelchair bound mother on my son's little league team. I'll bet the farm they're happy to have you representing them. A proud American that feels our returning disabled veterans ought to stay at home and not complain. They certainly don't deserve to be treated equally. Yes, I do understand you. > Most of these folks specifically and very vocally did not want to be treated any differently and absolutely did not want to demand special accommodations from others. There we go, you know how the disabled community feels. It's nice to have you speaking for us. Let me guess? Non-disabled? > When they needed help I and others gave it willingly and gladly and were rewarded with nothing but gratuity. Oh, now I understand. You were one of those helpful people that would carry us up a flight of stairs because you care for our safety? Leaving us without a safe way to get down? I want you to know how much we appreciate your help. In fact to thank you, we passed the ADA to stop you. How proud you must feel. > After reading your posts, however, I will be sure to rethink that voluntary effort unless it is someone I know well. Thank you. I feel safer now without your "help." You want to feel good about yourself because you are so willing to help us. Even though we'd prefer to take care of ourselves. > How ignorant I've been exposing myself and my family to this nonsense, especially without my hood. I'm actually scared of what you teach your family. Hooded folks tend to sew hoods for the rest of the family. I believe that is why we find ourselves 200+ years down this road and we still have to pass new civil rights laws for another minority community you have identified to hate. I do understand. > Does it cost a business owner to allow access to Women, Blacks, Irish, Gays, Elderly, or any other disadvantaged or protected group? Absolutely. It cost them even more to welcome you. Isn't that why some choose to go out of business instead of allowing "them to shop in my store?" Honestly, I'm not really seeing how the country looses when bigots fade away. Obviously, you feel threatened when your friends are identified and dealt with "legally." You'd prtobably prefer to drag us from your bumper. Think of the pride you'd feel if you could also hook the wheelchair to your bumper with me in it. > ADA clearly states that in order to bring a suit a plaintiff must have legal standing. I love this. You're going to explain to me how this works. Exactly how many of these lawsuits have you been involved in to make yourself such an expert? > In order to have legal standing a plaintiff must meet these qualifications: 1) they must meet the definition of "disabled" Thanks to CA, just about everyone is disabled. But please educate me. > 2) they must have been to the facility and experienced discrimination This is where you and I part. Actually, the law says I must face the barrier or not go because I know the barrier exists. But don't let me interfere with your teaching. > 3) they must have intent to be at the facility in the future I'm really looking forward to the interpretation of #3 for businesses like the Pony Expresso. I'm sorry you loose so many of your friends this way. I totally understand you wishing for the good 'ol days when you could decide openly who to hate and if "they" complained about your treatment you and your friends could just deal with them yourself without any fear of paying for your crimes. Another proud American. But I will still pray for you.

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  • Business OwnerMarch 02, 2012 - 8:29 pm

    Mr Kemper, Show me where I blamed the handicap in my post. (Did you even read my post?) I blame the State of California for the fact that anyone can make a profit on a situation where they never experienced a real barrier or even attempted to patronize the business they sue. I am the first to tell other businesses that they need to become handicap accessible. I made sure my business was handicap accessible and no, I don't believe that anyone has the right to demand money if a bathroom stall is off by a quarter inch. I do believe that someone has the right to sue if they experience an actual barrier but I don't feel that anyone has the right to drive around looking for businesses to sue. I feel that the State owes the businesses more help than they are providing. Simply leaving it up to the business owner to find out what the laws are is just not good enough. A newly created board for disabled access doesn't help the businesses who've been put out of business in the last several years because some opportunist demanded an outrageous amount of money from them rather than demanding they use that money to fix barriers. If you are angry at not being involved in the programs that directly affect you then it would seem that you should direct your anger and complaints in that direction yourself. The offices of El Dorado County do not have certified access specialists. We are on our own and I've already explained what could happen if a business follows Federal ADA laws without finding out the State's version. How is that fair to a business that is trying to be accessible?

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  • SodaWerksMarch 02, 2012 - 9:21 pm

    The term is "disabled" not handicap, the legislation is American Disabilities Act for PWD (People with Disabilities). I really take offense to "handicap", I am no such thing. I really doubt what you say as you still use a derogatory term to define a minority group of people.

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  • WordsWorthMarch 03, 2012 - 7:46 am

    Nobody was being derogatory. SEE: "handicapped parking", not "disabled parking". OR: "handicapped parking permit", not "disabled . . . "

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  • SodaWerksMarch 03, 2012 - 9:05 am

    Just because it says "handicapped" does not mean it is correct. The Federal, State and local govemental agencies have never been quite up to speed on ADA issues.

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  • WordsWorthMarch 03, 2012 - 9:21 am

    Better? THIS: "When someone is disabled due to a temporary or permanent injury, he can receive a HANDICAP placard or license plate from the California DMV." TO: "When someone is disabled due to a temporary or permanent injury, he can receive a DISABLED placard or license plate from the California DMV."

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  • SodaWerksMarch 03, 2012 - 9:07 am

    Just because there are still signs in the South demostrating one public water fountain for "Whites" and one for "Colored" does not mean that racism is correct either. There are just some areas of the country where people still have not been educated.

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  • WordsWorthMarch 03, 2012 - 9:32 am

    I see your point. It's like thinking of someone as "vertically challenged", not "short", thus lessening the shortness.

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  • edkemperMarch 03, 2012 - 1:31 pm

    Busines owner, > The offices of El Dorado County do not have certified access specialists. We are on our own and I’ve already explained what could happen if a business follows Federal ADA laws without finding out the State’s version. How is that fair to a business that is trying to be accessible? Why blame us? We are forced to do what your elected and hired idiots refuse to do. So? Is this a reason to exclude us? The disabled didn't create this mess. The non-disabled did. You want to continue to tell us what we need this is what you get. You want to end this mess, hire us to do the work for your local government idiots. Or just keep complaining and accomplishing nothing. You are also judged by those that surround you. Just like us. After running a small business for over 20 years, I know more about this subject than you do. I've lived it on both sides.

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  • BobMarch 02, 2012 - 10:07 pm

    Being disabled myself, I went to Carmichael today to visit Mr. Johnson, thinking he could help me with a frivolous lawsuit. However, upon arriving, I couldn't find a disabled parking spot at his office. there was no handrail on the ramp either. Mr. Johnson, I want to sue you. Will you help me move forward with this. You keep 1/3 and I'll take the other 2/3.

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  • Greenwood BillMarch 03, 2012 - 10:21 am

    Do it!

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  • wOwMarch 03, 2012 - 11:53 am

    "Do as I say-- not as I do" - (quote follows) See photos below of the offices of an attorney who has filed 600+ ADA/accessibility lawsuits against others. Note many of the same violations he's alleged injured his clients at others' locations; including: * Paper towel dispenser over 40" from floor * Soap dispenser beyond acceptable reach range * No grab bars in stalls * Seat paper dispenser above acceptable range * Mirror too high * Urinal too high * Pipes under sink not wrapped * Inadequate maneuvering room for wheelchair (partition could easily be removed) * Various irregularities in parking area (Found 3/4 down page at http://www.adaabuse.com/)

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  • edkemperMarch 03, 2012 - 1:35 pm

    Bob, It doesn't escape notice that you want to do exactly what we do. But at the same time, you still blame all of us. Funny how you find one disabled person with (reportedly) barriers and want to put us all in that same catagory. How are you any different? All of us are the same just because we're disabled.

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  • Bob BarkerMarch 03, 2012 - 7:58 am

    wOw!!

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  • Business OwnerMarch 03, 2012 - 8:10 am

    I explain that as a business owner handicap accessibility was always a concern to the point of paying for ADA certification and you, SodaWerks and Kemper, are so full of hate and anger that you continue to find problems where none exist. This is the attitude that businesses are up against. You should be thanking businesses like mine.

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  • SodaWerksMarch 03, 2012 - 9:12 am

    "Business Owner" - you have no idea who I am or what I have gone through, and just because I disagree with you does not mean "hate". Hate is what I experience on a daily basis from able-boded people in EDC. Where is the hate from? Is it because my disablility scare you? It is not contagious, you cannot get it, just look at the comments by Chelsea, J Overstreet, Evelyn - they ring of discrimination against PWDs, and you can feel the frothing from these people, as to their disdain of PWDs.

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  • curiousMarch 03, 2012 - 10:15 am

    What's the game? Bait and sue?

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  • Greenwood BillMarch 03, 2012 - 10:19 am

    Yep. That's the gate.

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  • Greenwood BillMarch 03, 2012 - 10:20 am

    Whoops.. Game... That's their game.

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  • Greenwood BillMarch 03, 2012 - 10:18 am

    You are as bad as persons of color who scream discrimination at every turn. No one "hates" the disabled. No one disdains the disabled. You are so full of c@@p that it's not even funny. It is you that has the hate and resentment for ending up the way you allegedly did. If you don't like the way you perceive to be treated, move. You are a whiner and are not wanted here because you are a whiner.

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  • edkemperMarch 03, 2012 - 1:42 pm

    Bill, > If you don’t like the way you perceive to be treated, move. You are a whiner and are not wanted here because you are a whiner. Your people (generally speaking, white males) didn't do that. Why do we have to? Your people stole this country from others because you were unrepresented. In fact didn't they take up arms and kill british soldiers to keep this land from the former owners? Why do we deserve anything less than what "your people" fought for? Seems to me we are more civilized because we go to court instead of just killing. Perhaps you should learn something from us.

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  • SodaWerksMarch 03, 2012 - 5:43 pm

    Greenwood Bill - you do not know of what you speak.

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  • Greenwood BillMarch 04, 2012 - 6:45 pm

    More than you think hater.

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  • edkemperMarch 04, 2012 - 2:25 pm

    Mr. Owner, Can you share who gave you "ADA certification?"

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  • Evelyn VeerkampMarch 03, 2012 - 8:35 am

    LOCAL BUSINESS LEADERS LEARN TO ADDRESS DELUGE OF DISABILITY LAWSUITS - "Johnson . . . often follows up with demands for money, encourages people to pay him to get a Certified Access Specialist report or files a lawsuit claiming his civil rights have been violated, according to Catherine Corfee, an ADA access attorney ... . "But paying him won't solve a business' compliance issues, and Corfee recommended against giving Johnson a dime." http://www.tahoedailytribune.com/article/20100613/NEWS/100619916

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  • colinMarch 03, 2012 - 9:34 am

    OMG One lawyer, one client who doesn't even go into these establishments but sends his kids in to take pictures. 'I HAVE FIRST HAND ACCOUNT OF THIS WE LET SOME IN BECAUSE THEY NEED TO USE THE RESTROOM AND A FEW WEEKS LATER I AM BEING SUED AND THEY HAVE PICTURES" My office is in an historical building and you just don't go in there and remodel the facilities with out all the red tape that goes with it. We might as well close up main street Placerville and move out, or lets use that hangman history and string up the crooked lawyer and there under mining practices !

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  • edkemperMarch 03, 2012 - 1:49 pm

    Colin, You have so many bigots in EDC that we'd almost have to close all of Placerville to end discrimination there. I note you don't dispute that the illegal barriers were there, just that you don't feel they did things the right way? Did I get that right? As for historic buildings? Take them all the way back to what they were when they were built, then let's talk. I am not aware of any that have not had extensive alterations to make them more modern and useful by the non-disabled. But to make them accessible to the disabled is going to far. I understand you very well.

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  • SodaWerksMarch 03, 2012 - 5:36 pm

    Colin - I have a business on Main St, my building was build in 1864, I was able to get the building in ADA compliance with little inconveince to me or my staff or my customers. It can be done, you or the owner of the building are just refusing to bring your building/buinsess into compliance. This is just whining BS from business. I had to gut the existing restrooms, rebuild them out and add a proper ramp to the restrooms for the various chairs we have today. If I can do it, in a building from 1864, which still has tunnels that lead to the gold mines, you can do it. The only thing stopping you from bringing the building into compliance is yourself. You have only yourself to blame for the lawsuit you state you have been hit with.

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  • Greenwood BillMarch 04, 2012 - 6:53 pm

    Thanks for confirming who you are. I will make sure that a) I will never do business with you and b) if I am anywhere near your building I will look for the opportunity to sue you. Also, I think I may look to sue you for damaging a historical building... See how you like to play ball.

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  • edkemperMarch 05, 2012 - 1:11 pm

    Bill, > Thanks for confirming who you are. I will make sure that a) I will never do business with you and b) if I am anywhere near your building I will look for the opportunity to sue you. I hope Soda will consider reporting you to homeland security. They may be interested in your threats. > Also, I think I may look to sue you for damaging a historical building… See how you like to play ball. I would be happy to volunteer to help Soda if you do. In El Dorado County, you obviously don't understand the county's exposure. You might find something small to sue Soda over. But just think how much fun "we" could have with retaliating against your retaliation. Just so it's clear, retaliation against the disabled for making a complaint carries an automatic $25,000 per day. By the way, if we're gonna sue over historic buildings, I hope you can prove they did no upgrading in the past. Many were built without electricity or other modern conveniences. If they can be changed for things you like, they can be changed for things we like. Know what I mean? Funny how brave you are to threaten the disabled while complaining about us threaten the poor business owner. I'm done wasting my time until the next time I visit Placervile.

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  • Oh BrotherMarch 05, 2012 - 3:34 pm

    Please don't visit.

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  • SodaWerksMarch 05, 2012 - 2:49 pm

    Bill - you haven't a clue as to who I am or where I am located. And you are going to sue me for what? Is that a threat? Building was erected in 1864 - but the building is not classified as "historical", in fact Placerville has yet to declare any of the historical buildings on Main St as "historical" so that the buildings can be preserved. Just about every building on Main St does fall into a historical classification, but none to date have sent in the paperwork for the historical classification and protection. Too bad, as the big box (Costco) stores are nearing their way to Main St. Can you see a Costco in a building like the Cary House? Horrific.

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  • wOwMarch 03, 2012 - 11:38 am

    'Paraplegic' Ditches Wheelchair, Flees Cops http://www.adaabuse.com/images/Medley_Article.pdf

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  • wOwMarch 03, 2012 - 11:43 am

    $200,000 for a bad weekend? "One San Diego attorney with disabilities demands $200,000 from 67 small, mostly family-run businesses in a small, historic mountain community. Apparently, he visited the community one weekend and noticed accessibility issues at certain properties, now he wants each of them to pay him at least $4,000. " (Found half way down at http://www.adaabuse.com/)

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  • edkemperMarch 03, 2012 - 2:00 pm

    Wow, Let's keep this on a level playing field. How much has your county paid you elected county officials just over the last 5 years to lead the county into this financial hole? How many newly constructed businesses were built illegally? Seems to me, paying the lawyer $200,000 to fix what your administration that has been paid millions over this time period is what you should be focused on. Stop blaming the disabled for what your county leaders have done to you. You pay far more than $4,000 per day in salaries for people to lead your county into a hole you have to pay to fill. I'm sorry for that. Not that we have to clean it up for you.

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  • Greenwood BillMarch 04, 2012 - 6:55 pm

    All you have done is insure that I discriminate against the handicap. Form now one I will look at your kind as potential lawsuits and bottom feeders. Good job Eddy.

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  • edkemperMarch 05, 2012 - 5:22 pm

    Bill, This will be different, how?

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  • wOwMarch 03, 2012 - 11:56 am

    and . . . finally: "Please keep in mind that it has been estimated that 20% of Americans have disabilities-- that could be as many as 50,000,000 people or more. Many good people with disabilities have suffered unnecessarily because of the actions of the very few. Viewers are reminded that each of us may someday find ourselves with disabilities and urged to consider how we would feel if it was assumed that we had engaged in similar conduct to others, solely based on the fact that we had disabilities. Additionally, viewers are reminded that some plaintiffs bring accessibility lawsuits from a true need to gain access to commercial premises, only after previous attempts to informally resolve the matter have failed." http://www.adaabuse.com/

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  • edkemperMarch 03, 2012 - 2:20 pm

    Wow, > “Please keep in mind that it has been estimated that 20% of Americans have disabilities– that could be as many as 50,000,000 people or more. So far, so good. > Many good people with disabilities have suffered unnecessarily because of the actions of the very few. Just to keep this clear, you feel us fighting for our civil rights is harming us? When the ADA was passed, we had almost 70% unemployment in our community. That has not changed. Not because we fight but because the ADA has never been implemented except through litigation. Let's make this clear, your county built your new courthouse because the old one is non-accessible. Yet the new courthouse was successfully sued because it lacks any compliance of the state and federal access laws. You are right, we have continued to suffer. But it is not because we sue. It's because others refuse to comply. > Viewers are reminded that each of us may someday find ourselves with disabilities and urged to consider how we would feel if it was assumed that we had engaged in similar conduct to others, solely based on the fact that we had disabilities. You are funny. I hear so often that non-disabled people can imagine what it's like to be disabled. I once had a meeting with an African American City Manager about disabled access compliance. He told me that he knew there were disabled organizations that would bring out wheelchairs so officials can sit in a chair and experience some of the barriers we discussed, "so that we can understand." I told him I thought that was a great idea. Then I mentioned that when we were finished, we could go back to his office and I could put black face paint on for an hour so I'd know what it was like to be African American. He paused. Then he claimed to understand. Then he returned to his city and hired another non-disabled person to be in charge of disabled affairs. His city has been involved in numerous ADA lawsuits since. Don't think for one minute that you can imagine how we live. We have hundreds of years of experience with you being aware enough to avoid the need for new civil rights protections. > Additionally, viewers are reminded that some plaintiffs bring accessibility lawsuits from a true need to gain access to commercial premises, only after previous attempts to informally resolve the matter have failed.” Here is the key: "only after previous attempts to informally resolve the matter have failed" Do you or anyone else you know need to go to this extent just to go to a restaurant, a hair salon or store to buy something? Why in the world should we have to? Are these business owners really so ignorant and/or illiterate that they have never read or watched any of these news stories over the last 20+ years? Funny how so many can find links to "stopADA abuse" type organizations and still claim they don't know about the ADA. If they can honestly claim they have no knowledge, then they are not paying taxes either. IRS sends a notification each year that they have to comply with the ADA. Sometime, you just can't protect stupid people.

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  • edkemperMarch 03, 2012 - 2:27 pm

    Wow, Another question for you: How many business owners in EDC are woman or minorities? How many of their businesses are CA or ADA compliant? It always fascinates me that people that gained their own personal civil rights protections that "allowed" them to operate a business would turn around and claim no understanding, knowledge or support of these laws protecting us.

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  • wOwMarch 03, 2012 - 3:47 pm

    Dunno. How many? KEEP TRACK - How many are . . . - black - white - male - female - over 55 - Asian - disabled (sort by disability category) - Ukranian - Mexican - Caucasian - have a net profit exceeding $350,000 pa - closed in the past year - will close this year - have faced ADA litigation - have faced financial ruin because BOS has "incentivized" large developers and/or big box stores (Sort out the statistics to revitalize the vanishing economy?)

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  • edkemperMarch 03, 2012 - 4:42 pm

    Wow, Holy Cow. Kind of went off the deep end didn't you? Didn't understand my question? I'm not asking how many have or will close. You are now trying to blame the disabled on the collapse of the world's economy. I didn't realize we were so powerful. So which is it, we are responsible for all business closures or we're all in a bad economy? I think I remember a lot of decades of huge business profits that never went into making their places legal when they were flush with cash. As for your local government entity allowing this to happen and selling out, again, not my fault. You have the power to change your representatives in office locally. Not us. We just have to clean up their mess.

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  • wOwMarch 03, 2012 - 7:00 pm

    OK, let's keep it simple. You asked, inter alia: "How many business owners in EDC are woman or minorities?" Since you have the answer, tell us.

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  • J. OthersideMarch 03, 2012 - 5:16 pm

    Ed, when you are the one constantly throwing them over my head, yes, it does take decades to shed the sheets....with your current "help", it will take decades more. My wife calls me cute sometimes, but since you clearly know me better than she does I'll take your word for it. I speak only for myself. There are plenty of disabled folks who have responded to you already, but you dismiss them as helpless parasites. And you refer to me as a bigot, throwing that sheet over my head again and again. But let the definition of a bigot be clear, not for you of course because you have clearly stated further learning is beneath your vast intellect and experience: bigot: a person obstinately or intolerantly devoted to his or her own opinions and prejudices, especially one exhibiting intolerance, and animosity toward those of differing beliefs. I'll leave it to the reader to decide who that definition applies to on this forum. "Thank you. I feel safer now without your “help.” You want to feel good about yourself because you are so willing to help us. Even though we’d prefer to take care of ourselves." This would be hilarious if it weren't so sad, considering your previous comments. I have an acquaintance who commented that Mother Theresa performed her selfless works only because it made her feel good personally, which essentially made her just as selfish as the rest of humanity. OK, I get it. I'll stop being selfish for your sake. Unless of course you do not speak for the entire disabled community; could it really be? "I love this. You’re going to explain to me how this works. Exactly how many of these lawsuits have you been involved in to make yourself such an expert?" Good point. To be in compliance you must be sued, or participate in other lawsuits, preferably multiple times, to fully understand the law. You've made the process clear for all.

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  • edkemperMarch 03, 2012 - 7:31 pm

    J., > Ed, when you are the one constantly throwing them over my head, yes, it does take decades to shed the sheets…. You do fine without my help. > I speak only for myself. No you don't. You have plenty of company up there. > There are plenty of disabled folks who have responded to you already, but you dismiss them as helpless parasites. I believe those that don't enforce their civil rights don't deserve them. All Civil Rights workers have had to face hate from some members within our own ranks. > And you refer to me as a bigot, - bigot: a person obstinately or intolerantly devoted to his or her own opinions and prejudices, especially one exhibiting intolerance, and animosity toward those of differing beliefs. Sounds accurate to me. You may or may not feel I deserve civil rights. You absolutely don't believe I have a right to enforce them unless I'm willing to work for these business owners for free. How did I get anything wrong. You won't work for them for free but you feel strongly that I should. > I’ll leave it to the reader to decide who that definition applies to on this forum. Yup. > This would be hilarious if it weren’t so sad, considering your previous comments. I have an acquaintance who commented that Mother Theresa performed her selfless works only because it made her feel good personally, Ah, I see. One person in the world known for doing her work without compensation and that is who you compare me to? You are selective if nothing else. Interesting. Out of curiosity, how do you think she'd feel about you? > Unless of course you do not speak for the entire disabled community; could it really be? I never said I did. However I do admit that I speak for far more disabled people than you do. > Exactly how many of these lawsuits have you been involved in to make yourself such an expert?” See, now you expect me to do all your work. I'll pass. > To be in compliance you must be sued, or participate in other lawsuits, preferably multiple times, to fully understand the law. No. The CA legislature passed SB1608 for their help. They did that because the the business owner wasn't willing to do it themselves. Now they have the perfect vehicle, if they use it in time. Do I need to explain what that is or do you do any research yourself?? > You’ve made the process clear for all. You still don't get it. I am not here to educate you for free. It's not my job just because I'm disabled and have the ability to read for myself. Besides, you haven't offered me a job teaching you. Remember, just because I'm disabled I am not in charge of training or education the public. I have in the past been asked by business owners about the subject and have spent plenty of time and effort to help them, for free. They all found it to be fairly straight forward and simple. Some chose to wait until they got served and then called for me help. But I don't do that work anymore. Don't expect me to come to your business, face illegal barriers, and then when you get served, expect me to be as nice and work for free. I don't think you'll understand the difference. Good luck.

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  • TontoMarch 03, 2012 - 5:25 pm

    Gee let's see Ed thinks Scott is ok to threaten people and extort money from them and let the ADA issues go away as long as he gets his money. Well Ed I guess that's what you do too because all your hate is because you too make money off of this scam. The real issue is not ADA but how much money you can make off of doing this "Job that nobody else would Do" You are right in that because we do feel and want the ADA issues to be solved but not by people like you and Scott because we do see that you are one and the same.

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  • edkemperMarch 03, 2012 - 6:26 pm

    Tonto, > Ed thinks Scott is ok to threaten people and extort money from them and let the ADA issues go away as long as he gets his money. You misunderstand. I do not work for the business owner. Neither does Mr. Scott. An attorney is paid to do legal work. I am paid Damages. It is still up to the business owner to make the changes. I frankly don't care. If the business owner prefers to keep the barterers and whine every time they are sued, so be it. We cannot fix stupid. If they can't get help from their building department, again, not my fault. > Well Ed I guess that’s what you do too because all your hate is because you too make money off of this scam. I don't hate bigots, I feel sorry for them. As for making money off them, interesting that the person who is paid the least is responsible for everyone of the professionals that collect millions in salaries and don't do their work legally. Exactly why am I responsible for their bad work? Like I keep saying, let me do the work for the county. I'd love the job. Otherwise, keep paying for the wonderful people that fail to protect the public from themselves. > The real issue is not ADA but how much money you can make off of doing this “Job that nobody else would Do” I thought it should be how much is spent paying for work that is never done legally. I'm not involved in that end of this subject. That is your highly paid public employees. > You are right in that because we do feel and want the ADA issues to be solved but not by people like you and Scott because we do see that you are one and the same. Right. Because we're both disabled we must be one in the same. How dare anyone claim that there could be more than one disabled person effected by illegal construction. I believe this is why the ADA was passed in the first place.

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  • craig williamsMarch 03, 2012 - 5:39 pm

    Cry me a river, you must be so exhausted explaining yourself to people. I've read must of your replies and it appears you are just angry.

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  • edkemperMarch 03, 2012 - 6:31 pm

    I admit I am not exactly friendly toward people that hate me just because I'm disabled. You know, the people who can't see beyond my chair. Bigots are not my favorites. But the rest of society, they are exposed to my smiling face.

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  • wOwMarch 03, 2012 - 7:14 pm

    Do you frequently assume people hate you? And you attribute this to your being disabled? We don't know anything about your possessions, including your chair. The primary quality you manifest in this discussion is self-pity. Don't know if a world of perfect ADA compliance would change that. All I can do is share what a good friend said to me years ago, probably fed up with my moaning and groaning: "WE ALL MAKE OUR OWN SUNSHINE."

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  • TontoMarch 04, 2012 - 8:26 am

    Wonderfully said, but sadly wasted on him he is just so full of hate and pity that none of us will ever change how he feels, the point is we all agree the ADA laws were needed and support the need to have access but the real issue above all is extortion and how this attorney and others are making a living off of hard working people who have taken steps to help but in the eyes of Ed and Scott are just a cash cow for them and for Ed's PITY party.

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  • edkemperMarch 04, 2012 - 12:34 pm

    Tonto, Just to keep it real. > the point is we all agree the ADA laws were needed and support the need to have access but Yet we are wrong to fight for what you agree was needed?

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  • Jim RiordanMarch 04, 2012 - 11:06 am

    From Kemper: " So I should get a job working out of my house because you don’t want illegal barriers to be removed.Let me guess, you don’t make a living out of your house either? I’m happy to know you are better informed about what we are able to do than I am. It would make you very happy if we’d just stay in our houses and quit bothering you." My response: Kemper this will be my last post since arguing with you is like deuling with an unarmed man. . . .Perhaps your biggest handicap is an inability to listen and a penchant for trying to put unsaid words in other's mouths to suit the outcome you desire. I never once said "I did not want illegal barriers removed" . . .I simply made the point that if you have a keyboard and the ability to use it, you can find work at home . . of course you have to WANT work . . .Instead of concentrating all your efforts on demanding unearned dollars from others while trying to paint yourself as a saviour . . . You are not. You and johnson are vultures not saviours . And by the way, I HAVE worked from my home for 35 years, so you don't have to "guess" anymore. You were wrong again! You seem to forget I am disabled for life as well. I am in pain every day all day long, I just choose to make the best of it. I am 100% for reasonable equal access and not ashamed to ask for assistance if it is not possible in certain historic or other unmodifiable buildings. I will continue to take the high road and seek help if I need it, help others who need it when I can, and EARN my dollars. At least I can sleep well at night knowing the dollars I make have not been made off the backs of other hard working people forced to lose their incomes by your greed you are attempting justify. Goodbye bloodsucker.

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  • edkemperMarch 04, 2012 - 1:02 pm

    Jim, > I never once said “I did not want illegal barriers removed” . . .I simply made the point that if you have a keyboard and the ability to use it, you can find work at home I want you to fully understand how happy I am that you feel my having one choice is equal. After the cost and years of education to get a doctorate degree and this is what you feel is good enough? Seems to enlighten your true feelings toward yourself and our community. > of course you have to WANT work I do work. You just don't like that I chose a different path than you feel I deserve. Okay. > Instead of concentrating all your efforts on demanding unearned dollars from others while trying to paint yourself as a saviour . . . You are not. Yet you have done nothing to stop the waste of money paid to your local government employees to do illegal work. Perhaps your efforts would be better spent there. But you have to do the work for free. > And by the way, I HAVE worked from my home for 35 years, so you don’t have to “guess” anymore. Legally or illegally? That is a whole different subject. But I'm betting that you are not exactly honest in this claim. > You seem to forget I am disabled for life as well. I didn't forget anything. I didn't see you listed in my "Who's Disabled" book. But then again, that explains a lot. > I am in pain every day all day long, I just choose to make the best of it. So do I. You prefer and perhaps need to stay inside. I don't. I have a freedom you don't I guess. Are you suggesting I deserve only what you have? Are you saying we are all alike? > I am 100% for reasonable equal access So you don't believe in laws. You feel we should only get what you personally see as equal access? So many people over so many years that fought for our freedom and you could have saved all that time and expense if we'd had just asked you. Okay. You have all the answers. All I'm left with is actually reading the law and applying it. > and not ashamed to ask for assistance if it is not possible in certain historic or other unmodifiable buildings. You've never read the law have you? I'm beginning to understand you very well. > I will continue to take the high road and seek help if I need it, So will I. You ask complete strangers who are undereducated and untrained to help you. I tend to ask for help from professionals. We both have a right to choose. > help others who need it when I can, Great, we have something in common. Except when I'm finished, you no longer need help from strangers. > and EARN my dollars. Well, so do I. What you don't fully understand is that I work. And like you, I expect to be paid for my work. Business owners as well as governments have a choice. Hire me or face me in court when they screw-up. Now if that isn't equal I don't know what is. When I sued the EDC new courthouse for being built illegally, I was actually there for a ticket I got. I had to pay my fine and you weren't there to help me avoid paying my fine. Then again, EDC paid me far, far more for their violations. Sound it sounds like my experiance at the EDC courthouse was equal, sort of. > At least I can sleep well at night knowing the dollars I make have not been made off the backs of other hard working people forced to lose their incomes by your greed you are attempting justify. I sleep well at night with a beautiful wife and a couple of wonderful kids. I have never seen any business that was closed because they were legally accessible. However I am aware of hundreds of thousands of businesses that have gone out of business over my lifetime that either didn't have good management or didn't have a product society wanted.

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  • Business OwnerMarch 04, 2012 - 5:48 pm

    Jim Riordan, Very well said. Kemper only hears what he wants and delusionally believes everyone hates him just as sodawerks thinks everyone blames him. I'm in no mood to continue listening to whiny, childish attitudes that are stuck on one song. I've done my part, I do encourage businesses to become handicap accessible but to fight when vultures like Kemper and Johnson attempt to extort money rather than actually accomplish something.

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  • Robert ZMarch 04, 2012 - 8:38 pm

    Ed Kemper, simply put,you are a sad little man. Little Trotsky wanna- be's like you and Johnson are more a disservice than of value. Please shut up.

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  • NicoleMarch 04, 2012 - 9:28 pm

    Seriously!

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  • NikJune 18, 2012 - 11:38 am

    well Mr Scott Johnson just summoned the whole street of businesses on West capitol ave, in west sacramento, ca 95691, Mr johnson please pass on some money to edkemper he needs some

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  • francescaduchamp@att.netJune 03, 2013 - 1:41 pm

    well anew business just went in there (actually a business that was already here i Pollock moved there--so someone fixed the restrooms

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  • Fran DuchampJanuary 08, 2014 - 1:41 pm

    why is someone bringing back this article...I still believe people in our own community called the ada people on many properties..one being the little league field...people playing on the field couldnt even find it--so how did the ADA get there? article is from March 02, 2012 interesting...is the CEDAPP group up to something again?

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  • Fran DuchampJanuary 08, 2014 - 1:51 pm

    USTaxpayerSickOfTreasonWithin why bring this article back? restrooms must have been fixed--a new business went in...when you call attention to something...more people come up and look....lolol....there is a group that wants...wait there are two groups that would like to see "walkable" communities up here...would getting rid of all these buildings and starting over been in someones plan? The tourists are stopping for starbucks/restroom breaks...thats it. People on their way to Tahoe--saved their money for Tahoe...not here. Bike lanes means plowing down trees and widening the main street...It swear people in some groups do not think. Sidewalks down forebay--thats is not going to happen...it would be silly to have sidewalks on steep ground where we have ice and snow. To be ADA compliant everything would have to be flat....thats a lot of work...and money. which would come from taxes. people will support children right now with taxes...and we just passed messure "k" for the school kids...not much else will pass right now. ADA is for America. REPORT ON THE POLICY DIALOGUE ON THE EU ACCESSIBILITY ACT <-- the Accessibility Act is across the pond (shhhhh it is the law.) http://www.equineteurope.org/Report-on-the-Policy-Dialogue-on

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  • Fran DuchampJanuary 08, 2014 - 2:07 pm

    Sorry about the mistakes in the past post...I can spell and write to some degree--but because of my fall--my hands are crippled. Any problems--correct it yourself...and send me a copy. Enough with ADA issues in Pollock Pines. Enough of having groups use that issue to get more political "power" up here...enough of using it to be someones "champion"--it sucks to be crippled in any way...but it sucks more to have people not realise it is important to be as independent as possible. Most "disabled" deal with not being able to get to high market shelves or maneuver around every table. Most understand that as long as people are doing something to help us--we are okay. Most would not want every tree on main street taken down--just to be able to be a flat ground. If these were real issues...many just move to flat ground. shaking head. If you are a business that is making it difficult for a crippled person in your store--they wont come back--and they will tell everyone they know. Owners had many years to "fix" things...I know if I see even an attempt--im good. ADA--a double edged sword. People using ADA issues for whatever--if caught--should go to jail--for a really long time. IMHO

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