Plaintiff sued the city and many of its officials for precipitously terminating its relationship under which the city had leased its property to plaintiff for special events, leaving the plaintiff without a venue for various events after the city had placed “soft holds” on the space for plaintiff’s benefit. Held, as to plaintiff’s breach of contract and interference with contract claims against the city, the city’s Anti-SLAPP motion was properly denied since the claims challenged unprotected activity of breaching a contract. However, the Anti-SLAPP motion should have been granted as to the defendant city officials since plaintiff sought to hold them liable for the city’s breach of the contract solely based on the officials’ expressive conduct in urging the city to terminate its relationship with plaintiff. Plaintiffs’ misrepresentation claim should have been stricken as to both the city and the officials since it was based solely on expressive conduct in the course of official city proceedings.
California Court of Appeal, First District, Division Four (Streeter, J.); February 20, 2018; 2018 WL 948499.