Fitzpatrick Lawsuit To Proceed
As reported by Bradley Zint in the Daily Pilot last evening, HERE, four members of the Costa Mesa Sanitary District Board of Directors voted last night to proceed with the lawsuit to force the remaining director, Jim Fitzpatrick, out of his seat.
WE KNOW ONLY THE DECISION
Since the decision was made in a closed session - Zint tells us it actually took two closed sessions - we won't know how the discussions went as the Board considered the decision by California Attorney General Kamala Harris and the rebuttal letter to Harris by Assemblyman Allan Mansoor in which he says he will introduce legislation to basically nullify the grounds on which the Board has based their lawsuit.
DESPITE A WARNING FITZPATRICK THUMBS HIS NOSE
It is our understanding that Fitzpatrick was warned more than once by Sanitary District Counsel Alan Burns when he initially ran for the Sanitary District Board seat that, because he was a Costa Mesa Planning Commissioner at the time, if he was elected he would be in violation of law by holding two incompatible positions simultaneously. Despite that warning Fitzpatrick did run and win his seat - and kept his planning commission appointment, as well. In fact, a couple months later - in what some interpret as an in-your-face move - he requested to be re-appointed to the planning commission and was, in fact, re-appointed. He was reminded, again, that he held two incompatible seats and, since he chose to be appointed subsequent to his election, he should resign from the Sanitary District Board seat. He refused and the lawsuit ensued.
WHAT ABOUT THE MONEY?
HE SHOULD RESIGN
ESTABLISHING THE PRECEDENT
There is also a body of thought that postulates that the lawsuit should proceed to resolve this issue once and for all on a statewide level. I'm not sure it's good for our community to be, once again, placed in a position of having precedent-setting legal issues created because of actions in our locale. You will recall that, primarily due to the obstinance of now-mayor Jim Righeimer, his bogus outsourcing scheme has resulted in a legal opinion that may force every General Law city to unravel their own outsourcing programs, much to their chagrin.
WAITING FOR AN UNLIKELY RESULT
retarded" from the official state lexicon) - it is highly unlikely he will be successful in getting it passed. Zint quotes Dickson as saying, "The precedent is very clear... it seems clear that this board is not interested in considering that the legislation run its course." This does not surprise me at all. Dickson has been supportive of Fitzpatrick throughout this ordeal. We think he's got it wrong - the lawsuit should proceed.
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