Judge Rules For Trump Organization In NYC Golf Course Fight

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NEW YORK (AP) – Donald Trump’s company may continue to operate a public golf course in the Bronx, a judge ruled Friday, saying New York City offered unfounded grounds for canceling the Trump Organization’s contract to run the golf course after the US Capitol uprising last year.

The ruling sends the case back to the city “for further proceedings”. It wasn’t immediately clear what that might be; a request for comment was sent to city officials.

The Trump organization called the decision a victory for the company and “a victory for justice” and New Yorkers.

The city’s move to cancel the contract to operate the Trump Golf Links at Ferry Point Park was “nothing more than a political vendetta,” the company said in a statement.

After Trump’s supporters stormed the Capitol to try to stop the certification of President Joe Biden’s presidential victory on January 6, 2021, then-Mayor Bill de Blasio announced he would be canceling the golf course contract, saying Trump was engaged in ” criminal activity” by the rioters.

Around the same time, the PGA of America canceled an upcoming tournament at one of Trump’s golf clubs in New Jersey. De Blasio took that decision as evidence that Trump had violated what characterized the city as a contract requirement to keep a job that could attract professional tournaments.

Trump is a Republican. De Blasio and Biden are Democrats.

The president’s son, Eric Trump, lashed out at the city’s decision at the time, calling it an example of “cancelling culture” and saying the city would have to pay his family business $30 million to make it disappear.

Many lawyers and contract experts doubted from the outset whether the city would prevail.

The contract terms never specifically stated that Trump must attract tournaments, only requiring him to maintain a course that is “first-class tournament quality”.

Manhattan State Court Judge Debra James agreed that nothing in the contract required Trump’s company to attract professional tournaments to the Bronx lane. The city’s claim that the Trump organization had breached the contract as a result “lacks any legal basis,” James wrote.

The city could have terminated the contract in another way, as the city can then terminate the deal without giving reasons. But the city would be obliged to compensate its company for money it invested in building a clubhouse on the course.

The decision is another sign that the Trump organization is recovering from business backlash following the Capitol riots.

Several banks refused to do business with the Trump Organization after the riots, raising fears that the company would no longer be able to borrow. But the company recently got a new $100 million loan for commercial and retail space it owns in Trump Tower on Fifth Avenue.

Trump’s company also recently struck a deal to sell its money-losing Washington DC hotel to a Miami investment fund for $375 million, far more than many hotel experts thought possible.

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