Thursday, April 18, 2013

Costa Mesa Charter Study Session Next Tuesday

The City of Costa Mesa finally released some information on the study session CEO Tom Hatch mentioned during his comments at the council meeting last Tuesday.  You can read the information HERE.  When the agenda for that meeting is available I will post the link to it here.  The meeting will begin at 4:30 on Tuesday, April 23rd in council chambers at City Hall. NOTE: Agenda staff report available HERE.

As you can see, there are six items on this press release that will be covered during the study session.  They are:

1 - Should the City conduct a Charter drafting process?

2 - If so, should the City use a Charter Committee or Charter Commission to draft the proposed charter?

3 - Under state law, a Charter Commission is comprised of 15 members.  However, if the City Council opts for a Charter committee, how many committee members should  be appointed and how should they be chosen?

4 - Should the City appoint an independent facilitator to assist in drafting the proposed charter?  If so, who should serve as the facilitator for the Charter Committee or Charter Commission?

5 - Who should serve as legal counsel for the Charter Committee or Charter Commission?

6 - What is the timeline for drafting a proposed charter?

The meeting will be televised live on CMTV, Channel 3 on Time Warner Cable and Channel 99 on ATT U-Verse and live streaming on the city website (

So, fasten your seatbelts!  Here we go again...  However, this time they're actually proceeding as they should have the first time around - when Jim Righeimer tried to jam his idea of a Charter down our throats with a process that was botched almost every step of the way.  The result was an overwhelming rejection of his charter scheme.  Let's see how this one goes.

Labels: , , , ,


Anonymous Mary Ann OConnell said...

The question most lacking is, "Is a charter needed?" The last question answers all the others - the charter is assumed a go so all the rest is moot.

The arrogance is stunning.

4/18/2013 05:43:00 PM  
Blogger The Pot Stirrer said...

You're correct! This has a very strong feeling of deja vu all over again. Even more fun - the issue they hung most of their argument on last time was that darn "prevailing wage". Now there's a bill in the Senate that will prohibit Charter Cities from escaping that requirement. And, another one floating around Sacto that will require ANY vote on ANY Charter issue to be done in a General Election, not a primary or local election. Expect to see that weazel, Kevin Dayton, pop up again soon.

4/18/2013 05:53:00 PM  
Anonymous MV said...

I think it's plain to see who they'll put on the charter commission - all the folks from your entry the other day, that were named to all the other committees. Yay! What could possibly go wrong?

4/18/2013 06:43:00 PM  
Anonymous James Rivera said...

Mary Ann,

THE QUESTION YOU POSE IS #1 ON THE LIST. Forgive me for yelling, I thought the presence of the question #1 was sufficient.

4/18/2013 07:30:00 PM  
Anonymous Bottom Line said...

Riggy got his political butt kicked in the last election- his boy Beve was replaced by independent-thinker Genis, his pet charter lost 2-1. Mensy only won because nobody brought up his faux sheriff airport behavior, the lawsuits he was named in, and his altercation with the school teacher.

If the Newport bosses don't promote him prior, Jimbo badly needs a triumph to be re-elected in 2014. Hence the charter push.

4/18/2013 08:40:00 PM  
Anonymous Robin said...

A little hasty with your yelling, James! Good thing that you frontloaded it with “Forgive me…” Mary Ann’s not deaf, nor blind, just literate. Take a moment to reread the first question and think about it. The question Mary Ann poses is “Is a charter needed?” The question City Staff asks is “Should the City conduct a Charter drafting process?” I immediately thought that’s not the first question, shouldn’t we find out if we need a Charter, and if some people think so, show us why we would consider it before we spend a lot of time and resources heading down that path?

The staff report certainly does seem to “assume the sale”, and pointedly reminds us that the Council majority will decide whether we will pursue a charter or not. Let’s not forget the mayor has stated emphatically he will bring back a Charter for the June election, so it looks like a forgone conclusion to me.

I’m not for a charter just for the sake of having a charter, and I’m not against it if it would really be beneficial. However, I think the process is not starting with the right question and already seems skewed toward a desired result. We shall see!

And I can’t help but wonder, if the Council majority really wants to demonstrate public input will be valued, why is this study session popping up on such short notice and at such an inconvenient time for most of the residents?

4/18/2013 11:25:00 PM  
Blogger The Pot Stirrer said...

You are correct, as is Mary Ann. The first question,"Do we need a charter?" The second question is "Why?"

And, Robin, you answered your own last question by simply asking it.

4/18/2013 11:37:00 PM  
Anonymous James Rivera said...

A process by any other name is still a process; whether short or long, or who or how many people perform the action.

4/19/2013 07:10:00 AM  
Anonymous Mary Ann O'Connell said...

Thanks Pot Stirrer and Robin for your supportive words.

The first part of the the process is to a feasibility study and learn if the charter is needed and then, and only then, do you engage in the drafting process (for which the current question #1 is appropriate).

This is "Business 101", and the council majority is often quoted as saying they want to run the city as a business. Here is their opportunity to do just that and they balked. We can all add our own suppositions as to why.

4/19/2013 01:01:00 PM  
Blogger just wondering... said...

Don't you think this is a foregone conclusion? Its going to be on the ballot no matter what the residents want. This is about what Riggy wants. PERIOD. Thats why the question isn't there.

4/19/2013 04:52:00 PM  
Anonymous Ted Stryker said...

The DP story on the Charter mentioned that the committee would be created in 2014 and the next chance for the Charter would be in the 2016 election, is that right? If so that doesn't seem so bad, a lot can happen in Costa Mesa politics in the next three years.

4/19/2013 08:20:00 PM  
Blogger The Pot Stirrer said...

Committee and Commission are two different animals. If a commission is way we go it must be chosen by the people and, as the law currently indicates, could be done at the 2014 primary election. However, there is currently legislation pending in Sacramento that would require EVERY item involving a Charter to be on a General Election ballot - that would move our Charter Commission out to the General election of 2014.

Also, one of the cornerstones of Righeimer's scheme was a way to avoid paying prevailing wages. There is a bill in the state Senate now that would quash that "benefit".

I think there is NO WAY the council will permit a commission to be used - we will see a committee, which could be formed the way the other committees were formed last week - and would certainly stack the deck in favor of the council majority. As Bradley Zint says in the DP article - the COMMISSION method permits the council to be bypassed - the committee does not. The council gets the final say on what appears on the ballot.

We still need to resolve the first - and as yet un-asked - question... Does Costa Mesa need a Charter? The second question then would be "Why?".

4/19/2013 10:54:00 PM  
Blogger Gericault said...

I find the staff report to be somewhat misleading and confusing on two obvious points. The first is under "background", and the complete omission of the fact WE JUST VOTED on a charter. The second area that seems somewhat disingenuously ambivalent and misleading through omission of fact, is where they discuss the cost and the analysis of what a study would cost the taxpayers. Didn't they even LOOK at that the last time? I guess not.

4/20/2013 06:32:00 AM  
Anonymous loser, level2 said...

gericault, they did those things as embedded shiny objects for you to stew over. worked again. they are always thinking of you as you are vital to the process.

4/20/2013 12:30:00 PM  
Anonymous Troll Tracker said...

"gericault, they did those things as embedded shiny objects for you to stew over. worked again. they are always thinking of you as you are vital to the process"

Another pay period where the wives outearned the trolls. Thanks for Walt and Buck. Stockton and South Bend beckon.

4/20/2013 03:58:00 PM  
Anonymous oiler matt said...

jusdging by gericaults's last sentence he is still "guessing". when will he step up his game to actually studying. end the guessing, you are poor at it, like john earl here in hb is.

4/21/2013 06:19:00 AM  
Anonymous Local politics are scary said...

I keep going back the picture of the Zombies at the start of this entry. I'm struck by how much the one in the forefront looks like Bill Lobdell. Pot Stirrer, that's just a coincidence, right? Right?
It is, isn't it?

4/21/2013 05:49:00 PM  
Anonymous Walking Dunce said...

Local politics are scary wrote:

"..the picture of the Zombies at the start of this entry. I'm struck by how much the one in the forefront looks like Bill Lobdell."

And isn't that his pal Swaim right behind him?

4/22/2013 10:56:00 AM  

Post a Comment

<< Home