Owners of $25 million Laguna Beach mansion ordered to take down sea wall, fined $1 million

Jeffrey and Tracy Katz own a $25 million house in Laguna Beach, CA. The house is very close to the pounding surf of Victoria Beach, closer and lower than the neighboring houses. So they built a sea wall to prevent erosion of their house's foundation. Coastal officials ordered the Katz's to take the wall down because it degrades the quality of the public beach in front of it, and, as the LA Times reports, "Sea walls can obstruct the natural flow and replenishment of sand, leading to smaller and smaller beaches until the sand disappears altogether." The Katzes and the officials went to court and the Katzes were fined $1 million and ordered to take down the wall within 60 days. The Katzes are fighting the ruling, saying that orders to remove the wall are reducing the value of the home and the ability to rent it for $70,000 a month.

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