Palm Beach Debates Trump's Stay at Mar-a-Lago

Lawyer had told the town members of the private club wouldn't be allowed to live there
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Feb 9, 2021 4:46 PM CST
Trump's Future Also Depends on Palm Beach Town Council
Mar-a-Lago in Palm Beach, Fla., shown last month.   (Greg Lovett/The Palm Beach Post via AP, File)

As the impeachment trial of former President Trump begins in Washington, a matter more important to his immediate future is being discussed some 990 miles to the south by the Palm Beach Town Council: whether he can continue living at Mar-a-Lago. Council members will hear their attorney's opinion on whether the town can bar Trump from living at his club, the AP reports. That was the deal Trump's lawyer offered in 1993: He said Trump would be prohibited from living there if he was allowed to convert the place from a residence to a club. According to Palm Beach Post article from the time, a Trump attorney told the council that Trump would be treated like all other members, who can stay in a suite for no more than seven consecutive days and 21 total days a year. But this promise was not specifically included in the written agreement, which may take precedence.

Technically, Trump is an employee of the corporation that owns Mar-a-Lago—and the written agreement only bars members from living there. Under town regulations, a club can provide onsite housing to its employees. The South Florida town in December received a letter from an attorney for a neighbor demanding it bar Trump from living at Mar-a-Lago, saying his residency would hurt property values. Trump moved into Mar-a-Lago on Jan. 20, the day he left office. The Trump Organization said in a statement, "There is no document or agreement in place that prohibits President Trump from using Mar-A-Lago as his residence." Trump owns two other homes near Mar-a-Lago.

(More Mar-a-Lago stories.)

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