COSTA MESA — On Thursday, a second volley was fired off to the Costa Mesa City Council over their apparent violation of the state open meetings law the Brown Act. We reported on Wednesday that the public access advocacy group Californian’s Aware had sent a letter to the City Council warning them that their conduct, in secret, of the ir “work groups” including the Budget Work Group were not operating legally.
The letter from Terry Francke, CalAware’s General Counsel concluded that the budget work group which council members Monahan and Righeimer used as the platform to launch their scheme to lay off virtually all city staff other than managers and police, operated in violation of the Brown Act because all of their business was conducted in secret.
A letter (HERE) from Orange County Employees Association General Counsel Don Drozd, hand delivered to the city on Thursday took the matter to what is the next legal level. In his letter Drozd tells the city that the actions the council took, based upon the recommendations from a secret workgroup are not legal and all action taken is null and void. The letter demands that the city correct or cure their violation of the Brown Act. This is the first step required before any legal action can be taken against the city for violating the Brown Act. They get a short period of time to voluntarily correct their actions or face lawsuit by either the District Attorney or interested parties.
While I suspect that the gang of four, Monahan, Righeimer, Mensinger, and Bever, will stick to their flawed course of action, the are likely to learn the hard way that obstinate resistance is futile.