Updated April 2, 2012: The State Court of Appeals denies Costa Mesa in its case against Registrar of Voters.
March 28, 2012
Judge Franz Miller denied Costa Mesa’s request to allow the proposed charter to appear on the June 2012 ballot because the necessary documents were submitted after the published deadlines. Judge Miller also allowed residents John Stephens, Katrina Foley, Mary Spadoni and Billy Folsom, all registered voters of Costa Mesa, to intervene in the case. An attorney for the city, meanwhile, argued that the residents had “no direct or indirect interest” in whether the charter goes on the June ballot. The charter might now be part of the November 2012 Presidential election where Costa Mesa City Council seats are also on the ballot.
President of Costa Mesans for Responsible Government, Robin Leffler, remarked “From the beginning of this action, many citizens have expressed their concern that this council has been making hasty decisions without proper consideration of the necessary procedures and processes. They missed the deadline. It could have been avoided. This trial has cost the city significant money, wasted time and energy, and added to the reputation this Council has for being litigation happy.
She continued, “Citizens need time to understand all the consequences of changing from a General Law to a Charter city. A Charter vote, if any, deserves to be a part of the general election in November, not a primary or special election.”
Sandy Genis, a member of the organization stated that “CM4RG will continue to bring information to the citizens of Costa Mesa so they will have all of the facts about the charter when they go to vote. We held a very successful town hall on key charter facts with very high attendance. One of our concerns is that the proposed charter would change the balance of power in our city, giving the city council more power while reducing the power of residents. This would include power over election rules. We are pleased to see that the residents have prevailed in this case.”
Costa Mesans for responsible Government (CM4RG) was formed in early 2011 to return Costa Mesa to an open, responsible, transparent government that is responsive and accountable to its people.
CONTACT: Harold Weitzberg 714 313 6334 hweitzbergcscom