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On a related note to the post below, you will remember the week before Labor Day, the word came from the mayor’s office that the mayor would not be receptive to compromises on the 121 plan specifics. He intended to “ram these things through” the council for approval, according to the U-T.

The Friday before Labor Day, the city attorney issued an advice letter noting that some of the recommendations require Charter changes and can not just be implemented anecdotally. He said transferring governmental power from elected officials to politically appointed persons was clearly illegal. “Monitors,” like those recommended by Kroll and the mayor, normally exist only in very narrow legal settings supervised by federal judges. Can’t just do it by picking out a guy you like and having the council approve him. Apparently, nobody had thought about that.

So, the question became would the council rubber stamp the “whole enchilada” or take a more deliberative approach. And, who would be considered the “winner” of the “all-or nothing” standoff. Silly, what?

The end result was that Scott Peters issued his own version of a what/when roll-out just minutes before the mayor’s “roll-out” of his “plan” before council. In a sense, this elegantly confirmed that some elements will be negotiated. The mayor’s presence at the Peters’ roll-out conceded that the all or nothing approach had not entirely prevailed.

The chamber of commerce, of course, endorsed the “plan,” but with some tempered words that did not sound like, “just vote yes for everything.” And, pleasantly, the San Diego County Taxpayers Association actually showed up with some thoughtful suggestions. Maybe we are starting to think before we act in those quarters. That would be progress.

At the end of the hearing, the mayor assured the council that every element was still available for change, modification or elimination on a to-be-determined basis.

It passed 7-1.

Afterwards the mayor said, “this is exactly what I had hoped for today.”

Scott Peters called it a “historic moment.”

I guess that worked out OK.

PAT SHEA

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