Southern California Edison has ordered the owner of a popular horse stable at Shaver Lake to tear down her operation and hand back over the land.
Gabrielle Kant, the owner of Shaver Stables, received notice from landlord SoCal Edison that she has until Feb. 8, 2024, to completely dismantle the stables and buildings. The termination comes three years into her five-year renewed lease.
SoCal Edison owns land throughout Shaver Lake, including Camp Edison, and leases to Kant to operate the stable, where her crew takes visitors on horseback around the lake.
SoCal Edison Trying to Rein in Trail Traffic
More foot and vehicle traffic has made the area unsuitable for horses, according to Gabriela Ornelas, a spokesperson with SoCal Edison. Parking has also become an issue.
“Due to increased recreation, recreation resulting in larger neighboring parking areas and more people on the trails used by horses, the current location is no longer suitable,” said Ornelas. “Our top concern is the safety and well-being of residents, visitors, and business owners.”
Ornelas said they are looking into “whether a different location on the property would be better suited for a new license.” She also said SoCal Edison has offered assistance in relocating the stable.
Owner Says They Can Use Different Trails
Kant said she offered using different trails, away from the dogs and humans that frequent their normal route.
“They’re citing liability and it’s B.S.,” said Kant. “They’re afraid of lawsuits. Give me a flipping break.”
She said she carries all the necessary insurance, including a $1 million policy. She has never had a lawsuit, she said.
And, with the exception of a few weekends, the parking lot is hardly full, Kant said.
Kant Suspects They Want Land for Other Purposes
Kant renewed a five-year lease with SoCal Edison in 2021. She said under the terms of the lease, however, either she or SoCal Edison can terminate early for any reason. Kant said they told her about the need to move back in 2021, but she was opposed to it.
“I did buy a business that was completely intact and ready to go,” Kant said in a follow-up interview. “Moving me would require probably three times as much as it was to originally build this place nearly 30 years ago.”
Kant said the location is perfect. “It really comes down to Southern California Edison because they have not picked a place for me to go,” she said.
Now that the land has been prepped with water and sewer, Kant said she thinks they want to use the land for other purposes.
“It’s already developed,” said Kant. “They can come in here and ride off of my back and what was paid for this business and they can take it over and they don’t have to do any work. There’s water, there’s sewer, there’s electric, it’s graded.”
However, Ornelas said that SoCal Edison “currently has no plans to develop the land.”
Stables, Buildings to Be Demolished, Says Kant
The letter from SoCal Edison directs Kant to “remove all personal property and restore the licensed area to a condition satisfactory to SCE by February 8, 2024.”
Ornelas didn’t comment on to what degree the buildings and stables have to be dismantled, but she did say SoCal Edison has offered to assist with tearing down operations.
Kant said that means pulling out the water and sewer lines, tearing the building down and all of the corrals, and returning the property to how it was before the stables were built.
Ninety percent of what she makes this year will go to dismantling her business, she said.
Losing Business Means Losing Investment
Shaver Stables was built in 1995, Kant said.
Kant herself has a long history at Shaver and Huntington Lakes. Her father, Stephen Sherry, owned Lakeshore Resort at Huntington Lake before selling it to its current owner, Levan Nargizyan of Sherman Oaks.
Kant and her husband purchased the Shaver Stables in 2016. She modernized her booking system and since then, they’re booked all the time, she said. She expanded the operation from 12 horses to 14.
“I can’t sell my business, I will get nothing for my investment,” Kant said.