Skip navigation

Recall discussion - City Attorney not at the top of his game

I listened to the Council discussion on the ordinance to put the recall on the November ballot.  It was especially painful because the City Attorney was off in many of the assertions made:

Listen to the discussion on the city website:

Here is what the charter says about council's obligation:  


   (C)   Action by Official.  When a recall petition has been determined sufficient, the City official shall have ten (10) days to resign.  If said official fails to resign during the ten (10) day period, a recall election shall be held at the next general or primary election or at the next possible special election, called by Council, if the next general or primary election shall not occur within sixty (60) days.

If the City Attorney can tell council they are forced to vote yes on the ordinance to put the measure on the ballot, then (giving him the benefit of the doubt that he did not know ballet language initiatives go into effect immediately) the proper advice on the Emergency Clause was that council was forced to pass the Ordinance by Emergency.  In fact, at 11 minutes 40 seconds he gives the correct interpretation and then a few seconds later backs away.  "The reason it was deemed an emergency is because our charter with respect to recall is designed to get it done as quickly as possible."  ......."(12:47) so in order to meet the requirements of the charter we would need to pass it as emergency" ...............

A day after this long discussion he discovered this section of the Charter:  


SECTION 5.07  EFFECTIVE DATE OF LEGISLATION.
(A)   The following ordinances shall take effect immediately upon their adoption unless a later date is specified therein:
(4)   Submission of any question to electorate or the determination to proceed with an election;

Having that portion of the Charter before hand would have saved 30 minutes of the 43 minute discussion - and a lot of pain.  Of course the Facebook/conspiracy chatter now is that this section was known during the discussion it just was not brought up in order to avoid the possibility of a counter referendum.  AAAHHHH, there is a reason I have been working on house projects instead of paying attention to council. 

Another mistake he made: 


Telling council if they choose to vote on the original emergency legislation and there were five votes for but not six then the measure would pass as non-emergency.  The charter requires a re-vote.  Here is how the charter reads:

(C)   In order to adopt an ordinance as emergency legislation, at least two-thirds (2/3) of the members of Council then holding office must vote in favor of such a motion.  If less than two-thirds (2/3) of the members of the Council then holding office vote in favor of such a motion, the Council may immediately move to adopt the proposed legislation without the emergency clause included and may adopt the ordinance as a nonemergency measure by a separate vote of at least a majority of the members then holding office. 



 

Rating

Unrated
Rating:
Edited