The Santa Ana City Council majority decided at their last-minute special meeting today to sue Mayor Miguel Pulido for not placing their illegal district election measure on the June Primary Election ballot, according to an inside source.
Apparently our City Attorney, Sonia Carvalho, hired an outside counsel to help her aid the City Council majority, which is currently comprised of Council Members David Benavides, Sal Tinajero, Vince Sarmiento and Jose Solorio, come to this awful decision.
Benavides and Tinajero are terming out in November – but if they succeed in placing their illegal measure on the ballot they will be in position to extend their term limits by another 12 years.
Pulido refused to sign off on last Tuesday’s vote approving placement of the district election measure on the ballot because he contends that the Council’s decision violated the Brown Act and he feels that the majority should have had five votes instead of four, according to the Voice of OC.
The City Council majority, and Carvalho, are contending that the City’s charter stipulates that the Mayor must sign off on the ballot measure paperwork. However Pulido is correct that he cannot approve something that is illegal in the first place.
Mark Rosen, an attorney who’s challenging the council’s ballot measure effort, said their actions are illegal on three fronts: it illegally used public funds by not having support from five council members, violated public hearing requirements under the California Voting Rights Act, and the alleged open meeting violations last week meant they couldn’t meet Monday, according to the Voice of OC.
While I support district-specific elections I do not support what the City Council majority has been doing – which has been hiding in the shadows while trying to force this issue onto the June ballot with very little public scrutiny. I guess the Santa Ana Sunshine Ordinance is dead now. What the heck happened to SaCRED, the grassroots organization that was so gung ho for the Sunshine Ordinance?
This measure should be delayed until the November election to give all of us a chance to weigh in on it – and to prevent the City Council Members from gaining a 12 year extension of their term limits.
Solorio by the way has shown his true colors. Siding with the likes of Benavides, Sarmiento and Tinajero will surely end his political career.
Pulido will term out in two years. At that point I suspect Solorio will run for Mayor. Pulido will surely back someone else – and perhaps Pulido will run for Solorio’s Ward 3 and stick around for a while longer.
It would not surprise me at all if Pulido were to recruit former Santa Ana Mayor Pro Tem Claudia Alvarez to replace him. She has never lost an election and would surely trounce Solorio, who got spanked just a few years ago by another woman candidate, now State Senator Janet Nguyen.