Costa Mesa Plans Charter End Run
UNDER THE WIRE!
Sneaking in just under the wire, the City of Costa Mesa announced this afternoon - just under the deadline for notifications of an emergency council meeting - that the City Council will hold a special council meeting tomorrow, Tuesday, April 10, 2012 - immediately following the scheduled study session - in council chambers to discuss the placement of Jim Righeimer's Charter scheme before the voters in a Special Election coincident with the June 5th state-wide primary election. You can read the staff report for that meeting HERE.
HASTE MADE WASTE
You will recall that the original plan was to have Jim Righeimer's Charter placed on the consolidated ballot, but either a clerical error or a screw-up of biblical proportions, depending on which version of the story told by the attorney's from Jones Day you choose to believe, kept that from happening. Because of that gaffe City Clerk Julie Folcik was placed on Administrative Leave and an investigation is being conducted to try to determine just how the deadline was missed.
RIGHEIMER'S ANGER AT PLAY HERE
In the meantime, I suspect Righeimer has not enjoyed the broad-based euphoria demonstrated by opponents of his scheme and was certainly looking for a way - any way - to keep this issue from being forced onto the November General Election ballot, where a larger cross-section of voters would be lured to the polls by the presidential contest.
MUCH MORE COSTLY
According to the staff report, if the council chooses to conduct its own election on June 5th, it will cost nearly 50% more than if it had been considered on the consolidated ballot and much more than if it was to be placed no the November ballot. The staff report states it will cost more than $153,000 to conduct this special election. You can read that 5-page report breaking down the costs HERE.
WHAT'S THE RUSH?
Again, I ask, what's the rush? Every step they've taken in haste on this issue has been disastrous. Now they will ask the taxpayers of this city to foot the bill to assuage the anger of one petty political operative eager to show his pals that he's got what it takes. Well, he doesn't - everything he has done in this city has been detrimental to all of us. IF - and that's a VERY BIG IF - a Charter is right for our city, then there should be no rush to get it on the ballot and there should be every precaution taken so the largest possible cross section of the electorate has a chance to consider the issue.
Oh, yes... remember in my last post when I said this was going to be a slow week? In the immortal words of Gilda Radner as Emily Litella - Never mind!