During public comments at Tuesday night’s Anaheim City Council meeting, former Los Amigos President Amin David asked how much the city had spent defending itself against the ACLU lawsuit seeking to force a switch to a district-based system of council elections.
He neglected to mention he is one of the plaintiffs in that lawsuit.
The answer to Amin David’s question was $144,000 as of the end of September.
During the campaign, Anaheim City School District Trustee Jose Moreno took council candidate Jordan Brandman to task about council districts, lambasting him for supporting a citizens commission to examine in a deliberate manner, rather than rushing to place a slapped together proposal on the November ballot.
“When we asked you to discuss district elections, and to be really clear that we want district elections now, to not go through the expense of a lawsuit, which is general fund money, but to rather have the council vote to put it on the ballot…”
Moreno’s point was that folks like Brandman were costing the city money in litigation costs by not preemptive lay bowing to the lawsuit.
That, by the way, is the line generally taken by the defeatists the among Anaheim activists, who have bought into the conventional wisdom that resistance is futile and a quick surrender is the least expensive option.
Leaving aside the validity of that conventional wisdom — which I do not buy — let’s consider David’s and Moreno’s concerns over how much their litigation will cost the city, because it is uniquely within their power to do something about it.
They could simply suspend their lawsuit until the citizens commission completes its work, forwards its recommendations to the Anaheim City Council, and the city council takes action regarding those recommendations.
Putting their lawsuit into suspended animation — not dropping it — would stop the clock on the city’s legal expenses.
In fact, it’s my understanding the city has asked them to do exactly that — and they refused.
Keep that in mind next time Jose Moreno, Amin David or anyone supporting their litigation sheds crocodile tears over “the cost to taxpayers.”