The Latest: Developer fined $15M over California coast hotel

The California Coastal Commission has fined a developer a record $15.58 million for building a high-priced hotel after obtaining a permit for property with moderately priced rooms …

The Latest on the California Coastal Commission fining a hotel developer (all times local):

8:55 p.m.

The California Coastal Commission has fined a developer a record $15.58 million for building a high-priced hotel after obtaining a permit for property with moderately priced rooms.

The commission voted unanimously Wednesday to punish Sunshine Enterprises, lambasting the firm for what one commissioner called “environmental injustice.”

Officials say the developer violated the landmark Coastal Act that protects public beach access, including the availability of less-expensive rooms.

Sunshine Enterprises was permitted to expand two modest hotels near the Santa Monica Pier, offering rooms for about $165 a night. The company let the permit expire and instead built a hotel where rooms run $300 to $800.

Sunshine Enterprises says it regrets the violations and will comply with the commission going forward.

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11:41 p.m.

A developer could be hit with a record $25 million in fines and fees for constructing a high-priced hotel on the Southern California coast after obtaining a permit for a property with moderately priced rooms.

The California Coastal Commission is expected Wednesday to approve a $15 million fine and recommend an additional $9.5 million in mitigation fees for Sunshine Enterprises.

Officials say the developer violated the state’s landmark Coastal Act that protects public beach access and availability of less-expensive rooms.

Sunshine Enterprises was permitted to expand two modest hotels near the Santa Monica Pier, offering rooms for about $165 a night. The company let the permit expire and instead built the Shore Hotel, where rooms cost between $300 and $800.

Sunshine Enterprises says it regrets the violations and will do what it takes to comply with the commission going forward.

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