Isn't it interesting that both parties are essentially claimning the same thing: that their property value has been damaged by a sudden change of legal status! Both parties charge the rules changed in the second half of the game!
In Mr. Schlesingers case, he is claiming that by adopting the 'Open Space' initiative submitted by ECCHO, the Escondido City council had effectively rendered his property as worthless, since he could no longer (in his view of the previous zoning) build homes on the defunct golf course. He claims the council changed the rules after the fact.
He is suing for damages.
While the homeowners were motivated to pass the Escondido Homeowners Property Rights-Open Space initiative, to protect their 'Implied Covenant' believing in good faith that their homes would always have the value associated with having a close relationship with the golf course. Reasoning that if the golf course property was suddenly to become more houses, their homes would have lost significant value and they would have suffered financial damages. Allowing new development would be changing the rules 50 years after the fact!
The pernicious irony is both sides have much to gain by locking themselves in a room until they hash out a deal. But will they?