Ventura County Drops Lawsuits Against Local Businesses

On March 17, 2021, Ventura County dropped its lawsuit against five local businesses that had defied closure orders by remaining open: Pizza Cookery, Mrs Olson’s Coffee Hut, Colosseum Gym, House of Gains, and Anytime Fitness-Westlake. At the center of the businesses who chose to fight back is an organization called “BRAVE,” an acronym standing for “Businesses Representing American Values & Enterprises.” Matt Brimigion, the president of BRAVE, says it started at a table in his business, Mrs Olson’s Coffee Hut, with three other people who felt the need to push…

High-end Restaurant Tangles with Westlake City Council

Tina Forti, co-owner of Novo restaurant with her husband Massimo, broke into tears as she spoke with the Westlake City Council recently. “You all keep saying we made a choice [to defy the council]. It was not a choice,” she said. “We signed to sell our house today… we have two kids.” Tina was referring to comments made on February 24 when City Councilman Ray Pearl said, “We are here because of a choice Novo made, not because of a choice we made. If they adhered to the orders, we…