Trump's move to his Florida estate challenged by neighbor

Srijita Sen
·2-min read


18 Dec 2020: Trump's move to his Florida estate challenged by neighbor

President Donald Trump's expected move to his Mar-a-Lago club after he leaves office next month is being challenged by a lawyer representing a neighbor.

Attorney Reginald Stambaugh says a 1990s agreement allowing Trump to convert the Florida property into a business prohibits anyone from living there, including him.

Stambaugh did not name his client.

Details: What is the complaint of the neighbor?

Stambaugh sent a letter this week to the Town of Palm Beach saying he represents a neighbor who doesn't want the president to take up residence at the 17-acre property because it would decrease the area's property values.

He also asserts that a microwave security barrier operated by the Secret Service is harming his client, who he says is exhibiting symptoms of microwave exposure.

Background: What is the 1993 agreement between Trump and the city?

The president and first lady Melania Trump changed their legal residence from New York City to Palm Beach last year.

The 1993 agreement between Trump and the city allowed him to turn Mar-a-Lago from a private home into a club having 10 guest rooms for rent.

It permits overnight stay to only members for 21 days per year divided into three non-consecutive one-week stays.

Details: Do those rules apply to Trump?

Stambaugh believes Trump is a club member covered by those rules, and the comments Trump's lawyer made in 1993 back that up.

"In order to avoid an embarrassing situation for everyone and to give the President time to make other living arrangements in the area, we trust you will work with his team to remind them of the agreement," Stambaugh wrote in the letter.

Fact: Trump had purchased Mar-a-Lago for $10 million in 1985

The Trump Organization issued a statement Thursday saying, "There is no document or agreement in place that prohibits President Trump from using Mar-a-Lago as his residence." Trump had purchased Mar-a-Lago for $10 million in 1985 from the estate of Marjorie Merriweather Post, General Foods' owner.

Terms: Terms and conditions of the 1993 agreement

Under the terms, it was agreed that he could turn the estate into a private club. It would be limited to 500 members, the initiation fee is now $200,000 and annual dues are $14,000.

The agreement has strict restrictions on parking and noise and specifically bars Trump from operating a casino or an animal circus.