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Costa Mesa Charter Discussion
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Costa Mesa Charter Discussion

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  • 1. Costa MesaCharter Discussion Mar. 15, 2012 Updated April 5, 2012
  • 2. BackgroundCharter = new system of laws for Costa Mesa, replacing California general law for municipal affairs
  • 3. How will what the charter doesn’t say affect Land Use and Parks?
  • 4. Land use/parks• General Plan and Zoning• What changes? e.g., hearing notice, standards for variances relaxed• What remains? e.g., second units in single-family areas• Parks and public property
  • 5. How would the Charter affect Voter’s Rights?
  • 6. Elections• (Sec 702)Unless otherwise provided by ordinance here-after enacted…• Council is permitted to override Elections Code changing election dates and election requirements.• Charter Cities have supreme authority to change Election Rules.
  • 7. How would the Charter affect other Resident Rights?
  • 8. Initiative/referendum• Amending the charter• Amending other laws• Changes in notices and public disclosure
  • 9. How would the Charter affect our pocketbooks?
  • 10. Our Pocketbook• Existing Law• Increased fines for minor infractions• Litigation• Long run costs
  • 11. How would theCharter affect PublicContracting?
  • 12. Whats in Public Contract Code?• Competitive Bidding• Licensed Contractors Only• Must Carry Workers Comp to be Licensed• Lowest Responsible Bidder Gets Contract• Method for Handling Change Orders, Schedule Slips, Cost Overruns
  • 13. Competitive Bidding• Need for Bids is Published Along with How to Get More Info• Deadlines for Submittal and Opening• Bid Scoring Process is Public• Can Set Up Pre-Qualification Process• Lowest Bidder or Lowest Responsible Bidder Wins• Codified Process for Appealing Bid Selection
  • 14. WHAT’S THE TRUTH?
  • 15. What is the truth?• No effect on existing unfunded pension liability• Won’t prevent Bell-like abuses• Unlimited power for council• Eliminates Citizen’s protections given by California State Laws• 75% of the cities in California are General Law Cities not charter cities.
  • 16. WHAT’S THE TRUTH? This charter puts the camel’s nose under the tent.A poorly written charter can lead to all sorts of abuses.
  • 17. Videos #8: Outsourcing Question• 8-1 Outsourcing and Pension Liability Can you outsource as a General Law City?• 8-2 Can being a charter city affect federal or other grant monies only available to municipalities?• 8-3 Can being a charter city affect how we get Federal Money for non profits? If we are getting Federal Money, will our ability to receive that money be affected by being a charter?
  • 18. Videos #9: Pension Liability Question• 9 -1 How do your propose to solve the problem of 7 million dollars unfunded liability created by previous city councils due to a lack of foresight with regards to salaries and overly generous retirement benefits.? I think you are scapegoating the present City Council. They are trying to work through the above problem and need certain tools…example the charter to prevent the city from going bankrupt.
  • 19. Video #10: Council Member Removal, Disclosure, Citizens Commissions, and Charter Proponents• 11-2 Under the proposed charter: Do council members have the right to remove another council member without cause? With how many votes?• 11-3 3 people can control the whole city? Isn’t that how we got here, secretive, non-disclosure? Where is the improvement?• 11-4 Assuming the charter referendum is not on the June 2012 ballot, could a group of Costa Mesa citizens form their own working group to research, develop and present a charter for the citizens to vote on? Does the working group have to be officially appointed by the current CM City Council?• 11- 5 Who are the proponents of passing a charter: political, business or otherwise? And what are their respective reasons?• 11-6 Why isn’t anyone on the panel for the Charter?• 11-6a• What are you afraid of?
  • 20. Video #11: Why June? Pay Raises for City Council?• 11-1 Any other items on the ballot? If not, why June? Why do this at all?• 12-2 This question pertains to the Charter City Council 1. Can the City Council members raise their salaries without voter approval? Is there a ceiling for salaries of City Council Appointees? 2. Would there be Councilman Districts under the City Charter?• 12-3 /13-1 Will the charter give the council the ability to dispense with the lawsuit filed by our employees association for their blatant disregard of their employment contract?
  • 21. Video #12: Employee Association Lawsuit? Checks and Balances?Public Comment at Council Meetings? • 12-1 Will the charter give the council the ability to dispense with the lawsuit filed by our employees association for their blatant disregard of their employment contract? • 12-2 In the panel’s estimation does the charter, as proposed, remove the checks and balances that would prevent political corruption? • 13-3 What laws in the charter would require the City Council to comment on considerations of public input at Council Meetings?
  • 22. Video #13: Council’s Expansion of Power and Penalties for Charter Violations• 13-1 On your slide, What is the Truth, Would you please explain item #3, unlimited power for council?• 13-2 1. Are there any penalties for violating the provisions of a charter is not specified in it?
  • 23. Video #14: Initiative Standards, City Employee Powers, Motivation of Employee Sections, and Prevailing Wage Questions• 14-1: Where is the 15% requirement for initiative petitions?• 14-2: What are the powers and duties of the CEO under the proposed charter? Do they need to be spelled out more clearly?• 14-3: Who appoints the City Treasurer now an under the charter? Could this be an independent office?• 14-4: What do you think is the motivation behind the charter section controlling employee contributions, dues, and benefit increases?• 14-5: Explain the lawsuit involving the City of Vista prevailing wage and how the outcome in California Supreme Court might affect the Costa Mesa Charter?
  • 24. Video #15: Buena Park Charter• 15-1 Buena Park has a simple one page charter with two paragraphs. If a charter is a good idea, why not use a simple enabling document, easier to pass, no unintended consequences?
  • 25. Video #16: Ethically Transparent Decisions• 16-1 Given all that happens in general law or charter cities is a result of decisions made by the city council, planning, public works; A. Is there a process in place to make decisions transparently? B. If not, what process would be required to implement and require a decision making process so ethically transparent decisions are made?• 16-2: If an item is on the agenda and there is citizen input at the meeting how does the Brown act cover that?• 16-3: Is there a process with the city so that we can see how they came to a decision on an issue?
  • 26. Video #17: Fines, Design and Build Construction, and Wrap Up• 17-1: What ceiling is there on fines at present?• 17-2: What is “design and build” in construction projects?
  • 27. Learn More atwww.cm4rg.org

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