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Tuesday, May 16, 2006 | Tensions ran high at the San Diego City Council’s consideration of City Attorney Mike Aguirre’s budget Monday, as council members politely couched their queries to avoid confrontation, members of the audience at times shouted at each other, and Aguirre accused the council president of conspiring with his opponents to overload public testimony against him.

The meeting marked a unique circumstance: Aguirre had to answer the questions of the council, which will have the final say over his budget. The city attorney has strived to project the notion that his office is not beholden to the council but is rather independent of their dealings – ruffling a few feathers along the way.

He tried to justify his stance Monday.

“Had there been a truly independent legal department … the city would not be in the situation it is today,” he said.


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