And tomorrow is a huge day at the Civic Center.
In the morning there is a hearing in the Lunada Bay Boys case, featuring Palos Verdes Peninsula zillionaire surf-localism-thuggery at its most flamboyantly weird. In the afternoon there is an essential meeting of the Ethics Commission. Turn the page for times, locations, and brief descriptions. Perhaps I’ll see you there!
Next up we have the Ethics Commission meeting. It’s at 1:30 p.m. in City Hall room 1050. Here is a copy of the agenda. There are a number of enforcement case stipulations,3 the most interesting of which is the egregious case of long-time uber-lobbyist John Ek’s zillion dollar birthday party. The stipulation itself is worth reading as is this fine article by the incomparable Emily Alpert Reyes.
But by far the most interesting item is these proposed updates to the enforcement regulations. As far as I can tell, no one’s reported on these yet! Many of them are quite technical, having to do with when statutes of limitations are stopped and started and other such procedural matters. However, there are a couple potential blockbusters in there. First, there’s item 6(a), which extends the duty to cooperate with Ethics Commission investigations from merely City employees to “all persons.” This is huge. Right now, for instance, in their investigation of shadowy BID consultant Tara Devine for unregistered lobbying, just imagine that they could subpoena her records as well as getting the goods from the Clerk and from CD11. This would be excellent!
And also see item 6(b). Here the enforcement staff notes that there’s presently no explicit requirement for City staff to report violations of the Municipal Ethics Laws. They’re recommending that such a requirement be put in place. This is really, really essential. For instance, such a law would have spared us the disgusting spectacle of Herb Wesson smoochy-woochying Marie Rumsey on the floor of the City Council chambers when he ought to have been turning her in to the freaking Ethics Commission. Changing the law won’t make Herb Wesson do the right thing. After all, the law can only do so much. But at least it would have made it possible to turn him in his own self. Not to mention the smarmy CD13 staffers who enabled Lisa Schechter’s violations of the post-employment restriction ordinance.4
These are proposals by the enforcement staff to the Commission. If the Commission approves them, and I see no reason why they should not, they will be forwarded to the City Council for approval or disapproval. The law requires City Council to act within 60 days. They can vote them up or vote them down, but they are not allowed to edit them. My feeling is that they’re in so much distress over the heightened scrutiny they’re being subjected to because some kind of critical mass of people have noticed that they’re a bunch of criminals, that they will approve these even though they probably don’t particularly want to. This has not been automatic in the past, but these days, I think even our esteemed Council-dudes and dudette know that voting against this is going to make them look really really really bad. We shall see!
So that’s what’s up tomorrow, friends! And if I know my federal courts, Otero will knock off by noon, leaving 90 minutes to head over to Little Tokyo for lunch. An ideal day all around!
Image of anti-homeless plant is a public record and I got it from here.
- Which I suppose it’s possible to be even given that this notion of a “revitalized” Hollywood exists mostly in the heads of a bunch of bad BIDfellows. But really, don’t we all live mostly in our heads, not just real estate agents and their enablers? Forbearance, friends!
- Better than most formats, worse than a few. But here at MK.Org we swore a long time ago never to let the better be the enemy of the best, which is not exactly like the cat i’ th’ adage, but close enough for government work.
- This time around, unlike at the last meeting, there are none of my cases. No worries, though. Those wheels grind slowly, but they grind, they grind.
- And even, I kind of hate to say (but not really), David Ryu’s staffers at CD4 who refused to be lobbied by Schechter but also don’t seem to have turned her in themselves, which they certainly ought to have done. And maybe they did, actually. Probably we’ll never know.