Tesla CEO sues county of headquarters, threatens to move factory elsewhere


Tesla CEO Elon Musk has filed a case against the county of its headquarters —Alameda, California — after local health authorities prevented him from restarting operations at the electric car maker’s manufacturing plant in Fremont last Friday, May 8.

The lawsuit states that Alameda County, where Tesla is based, unconstitutionally forced businesses to shut down by threatening them with fines and other penalties, even after these businesses have been deemed essential by the federal government.

The lawsuit also argues that Tesla’s facilities in San Joaquin — a county that lies just to the east of Alameda — hasn’t implemented such restrictions, despite the two counties having markedly similar COVID-19 statistics.

“I’m not messing around. Absurd & medically irrational behavior in violation of constitutional civil liberties, moreover by *unelected* county officials with no accountability, needs to stop,” Musk said in a Twitter post, with an accompanying copy of the lawsuit.


Prior to Alameda County’s actions, Musk had already announced the reopening of the Fremont plant to his employees via email.

Unfortunately for him, Dr. Erica Pan, the interim public health office for Alameda County, announced that the factory where they made the infamous Cybertruck prototype did not have the ‘go signal’ to resume business in a public meeting that Friday.

The following morning, Musk announced his plans to move the company in a tweet using his personal Twitter account.

“Tesla is filing a lawsuit against Alameda County immediately. The unelected & ignorant “Interim Health Officer” of Alameda is acting contrary to the Governor, the President, our Constitutional freedoms & just plain common sense!” the Tesla CEO added, most likely referring to Dr. Pan.


Frankly, this is the final straw. Tesla will now move its HQ and future programs to Texas/Nevada immediately. If we even retain Fremont manufacturing activity at all, it will be dependen (sic) on how Tesla is treated in the future. Tesla is the last carmaker left in CA.” went Musk’s rant on Twitter.

Despite Alameda County’s decisions, Lily Mei, the mayor of Fremont, expressed her support of Tesla restarting operations as long as they implemented certain precautions against COVID-19 infection.

Also after Musk’s tweets, Neetu Balrum, a public information manager for Alameda County, said in a news segment that they’ve been in contact with the Tesla CEO and are now working on a strategy to reopen the automotive manufacturing plant.

Photos from Elon Musk's Twitter account

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