Parking board sent back to the drawing board

For the second time since February, the San Diego City Council was unable - or unwilling - to make a decision that would resolve the ongoing confusion over the need for members of the La Jolla Community Parking District Advisory Board (LJCPDAB) to file conflict-of-interest forms.

Despite a recent call to disband the board by Council President Scott Peters, the board is still operating under mandate of the City Council. However, the board has been told by the city attorney that it cannot undertake business so long as the issue of conflict-of-interest forms has not been resolved.

By state law, bodies that are purely advisory in nature do not require members to make public disclosures of possible conflicts of interest. However, one interpretation of the Parking Advisory Board is that it is more than an advisory board. State law requires bodies that disburse revenue to have members disclose all possible conflicts of interest.

Following the Council's February directive to the city attorney's office to return in April with two options for how to resolve the issue of conflict-of-interest forms, Deputy City Attorney Michael Calabrese presented a conflict code applicable to all of the city's parking boards, as well as proposed revisions to City Council Resolution 100-18 that would negate the need for financial disclosure by making the parking boards advisory.

The April 15 meeting ended, however, with Peters returning the issue to Calabrese for additional problem solving. In addition, Peters recommended that the La Jolla parking advisory committee not meet until some resolution has been achieved.

Calabrese asked what specifically the Council would like to see in the way of options, but did not receive an answer.

Following the meeting, Calabrese said, "We're not entirely sure what happened except they're sending it back to the City Attorney's office."

This came after several La Jolla residents encouraged the Council to move to a resolution of the issue after six months of inactivity. Among these were Ed Ward, who drafted a counter parking plan that did not include paid on-street parking; Council candidate Sherri Lightner, who also opposes paid parking; and LJCPDAB chair Martin Mosier.

Despite directives from both City Attorney Michael Aguirre and from Peters, Parking Board Chair Martin Mosier chose to hold the committee's regularly scheduled meeting April 17.

The meeting drew fewer than 20 attendees, significantly fewer than last month's meeting.

Mosier and Calabrese attempted to explain to residents the current status of the parking board.

"Our board is not opposed to reasonable disclosure," Mosier said, but he refused to interpret whether or not the board was advisory in nature.

Mosier stated the board's next meeting was cancelled, pending a decision from the City Council.

"I'm not ready to give up yet, but I'm getting close," Calebrese said.

   
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