Council fills out Ethics Commission posts

The City Council voted 7-0 on Tueday to appoint two members to the San Diego Ethics Commission and reappoint two others.

Appointed to the seven-member panel were attorney John O’Neill, who replaces Krishna Haney, who resigned. Also appointed was businessman Graydon “Bud’’ Wetzler, who replaces Guillermo Cabrera, who also resigned.

Reappointed were Lee Biddle and Clyde Fuller.

Two pending resignations on the Ethics Commission are expected in June,

staffers told the City Council.

Councilwoman Marti Emerald, who is now challenging a pending enforcement action being considered by the Ethics Commission, recused herself from the vote.

The appointments came on the same day that the San Diego County Grand Jury issued a report urging the city to fill current vacancies on the Ethics Commission “as quickly as possible.”

The grand jury also reiterated two recommendations made in a previous report released in June of last year. The grand jury then called on the city to expand subpoena powers for the Ethics Commission and pushed for a public vote to ensure the panel has adequate funding and independence.

The City Council subsequently opted not to implement those recommendations.

In Tuesday’s report, the grand jury also called for the establishment of a similar commission for San Diego County. The panel urged the Board of Supervisors to docket the issue at an upcoming meeting.

The San Diego Ethics Commission, which was established in 2001, investigates violations of the city’s campaign and lobbying laws and enforces violations through the imposition of fines.