A Silicon Valley billionaire and Democratic mega-donor is petitioning the Supreme Court to take up his four-year battle to keep surfers off of his private beach.
Vinod Khosla struck it rich as the co-founder of Sun Microsystems in the 1980s. Since making his fortune, he has made headlines for donating more than $1 million to Democratic politicians and organizations, as well as for his legal crusade to keep his private Martins Beach beachfront inaccessible to the public.
Under state law, the California Coastal Commission must approve any new coastline development or any changes to the amount of access the public has to a beach. When Khosla purchased 53 acres of land in 2008, he blocked off beaches that had previously been open to the public, without seeking a permit from the commission.
Khosla argues that it is an infringement of his property rights to force him to allow surfers and other beach-goers onto his private property.