Governor Brown calls for new nominees to the Coastal Commission
February 1, 2011
By JACK MCCURDY
Governor Jerry Brown has called for nominees from this area to the California Coastal Commission in the wake of reports that the appointment of Mary Ann Reiss, a Republican protege of Assembly member K.H. “Katcho” Achadjian, was tainted by complaints that her nomination process was partially hidden from the public, which reportedly has prompted a large number of requests that Brown replace her. [SLoCoastJournal]
Former Governor Arnold Schwarzenneger appointed Reiss in December before he left office.
Some have blamed Schwarzenegger for some city council members not being aware of the process for nominating candidates to replace Achadjian as a result of Schwarzenegger not distributing the request for nominations as widely as state regulations call for. But it appears that the process was followed adequately. He did notify the clerk-recorder’s office properly, and Rodewald did notify the mayors, except that some mayors apparently did not forward the information to members of their city councils.
Julie Rodewald, San Luis Obispo County’s clerk-recorder, said she received a notice from Brown on Friday, January 28, requesting that San Luis Obispo, Santa Barbara, and Ventura counties each conduct their process for making nominations from among city council members and from among county boards of supervisors.
Although Brown did not specifically identify an appointment to the Coastal Commission, his notice strongly indicated that is what the nominations are being sought for “should a vacancy actually occur,” apparently meaning the governor may be considering vacating Reiss’ appointment. No other vacancies on state boards or commissions are under consideration from this area.
Rodewald already had gone ahead and won the support of what is called a Selection Committee—to recommend nominees for certain state boards and commissions, including the Coastal Commission—at a January 14 Committee meeting to consider revised rules of procedures aimed at avoiding the situation where some members of city councils in San Luis Obispo County said they were not aware of the nomination process that led to Reiss’ appointment.
The rules previously called for the mayor of each city to notify city council members, and some council members reportedly have complained that they were not notified. So they felt left out of the process of recommending a new member to replace Achadjian, who had represented this area as a member of the Board of Supervisors before his election to the Assembly last November 2.
The change in rules she proposed now provides for her office to issue notices to city clerks in each city that a governor is seeking such nominations and for their “distribution to all City Council members” by the clerks. In addition, the rules, as she proposed, now provide that the agenda of a Selection Committee meeting and any related staff reports be posted on the clerk-recorder’s website.
Rodewald has suggested three alternative dates for the Selection Committee to meet and make nominations to meet Brown’s request, which must be completed within 45 days after Brown called for nominees.