The state Supreme Court has refused to hear the Baker case, the major legal challenge to Santa Monica's rent control law.
The request was rejected by a 4-3 vote, exhausting the final avenue of appeal within the state for apartment owners who contend that the rent control law is unconstitutional.
Joel Levy, the general counsel for the Rent Control Board, said the decision vindicates the law. Apartment owners may take the case, named for landlord James W. Baker, to the U.S. Supreme Court.
The Baker case was filed in 1979, one day after the passage of the rent control law. Part of the suit was upheld by a Superior Court in 1983. But it was unanimously rejected by the state Court of Appeal earlier this year.