News about the COVID-19 pandemic, and the county’s response and regulations, changes daily. The guests on Friday’s (May 22) Up Close Show on Z107.7 will be Corwin Porter, the assistant director for Public Health with San Bernardino County, and County Supervisor Dawn Rowe. Call the Up Close Show on Friday, starting at 10 a.m. with all your questions about COVID-19, testing, and county regulations.
In yesterday’s primary election, County Supervisor Dawn Rowe will retain her seat on the board of supervisors. She received 56.15 percent of the vote.
Morongo Basin voters were emphatic in their disapproval of Measure C, the school bond measure for Morongo Unified Schools; nearly 61 percent voted no.
There will be a run-off election in November for the District 42 State Assembly seat between Chad Mayes, who changed his party affiliation to Independent, and Andrew Kotyuk, a Republican. Mayes leads Kotyuk by about 900 votes.
And for the first time in several elections, there will be a Democrat challenging a Republican on the November ballot for the 8th District Congressional Seat. Jay Obernolte won with 35.4 percent of the vote, followed by Christine Bubser with 27 percent.
In the judicial elections, judges Joel Agron and Stanford Reichert will retain their seats, with 54.98 and 53.75 percent, respectively.
Californians voted down Prop 13, by 56 percent.
And Californians preferred Bernie Sanders to Joe Biden as their Democratic nominee for president, 33.2 percent to 24.3. Mike Bloomberg was third at 14.7, and Elizabeth Warren was fourth with 12.1 percent.
In the latest round of “she’s in-she’s out,” the California State Supreme Court ruled yesterday that County Supervisor Dawn Rowe is in—for now. Rowe was appointed to the board in December 2018, but her appointment was immediately challenged in court by the political advocacy group, I.E. United, which charged that her appointment violated open meeting laws. Earlier this month, a county judge ruled that Rowe must step down from her seat and Governor Gavin Newsom must appoint someone to the Third District seat. The Board of Supervisors was expected to rescind its appointment of Rowe at its January 28 meeting. But yesterday the State Supreme Court put the order on hold, and Rowe will remain a supervisor. The county had filed an appeal last week asking that Rowe retain her seat while the appeal moves forward, which the State Supreme Court granted.
Showing respect for a court decision that ruled that County Supervisors must rescind her appointment to the 3rd District seat on their Board, County Supervisor Dawn Rowe told Z107.7 News that while she is still legally in office, she is no longer acting in an official capacity.
Until the full Board of Supervisors votes to rescind her appointment, she remains in a sort of political limbo, still in office, but not acting in an official capacity. The supervisors are expected to formally rescind the appointment when they meet January 28.
A lawsuit by I.E. United, a political action group whose stated purpose is to get more progressives elected to offices in the Inland Empire, claimed that the Board violated the State’s open meeting laws in the appointment process. The board originally stated it would interview all applicants for the seat of James Ramos, who resigned when he was elected to the State Assembly. However, when 48 residents applied, the supervisors changed the interview process to one in which each supervisor would email his or her top 10 choices to the board clerk, which would compile a list of those who appeared on multiple lists, and those were the applicants who would be interviewed. A judge agreed with I.E. United and ordered Towe’s seat vacated. The County appealed that ruling and asked that Rowe remain in office until the appeal is ruled on.
On January 8, the judge ruled that Rowe cannot stay in office pending appeal and ordered the seat be vacated. The county has appealed to the State Supreme court.
When the Supervisors vote to rescind the appointment, the Governor can then choose to either appoint a supervisor or wait until the upcoming election, leaving the 3rd District unrepresented for up to 10 months.
While the Supervisor’s position is supposedly non-partisan, politics are involved. The Governor is a Democrat, while Rowe is a Republican. Rowe has a lot of support; 11 mayors and some county labor unions have indicated they want the Governor to simply appoint Rowe back into the seat.
San Bernardino County will ask the state’s highest court to let Supervisor Dawn Rowe remain on the board while it appeals a superior court judge’s ruling that her appointment was “null and void” and must be rescinded. The county plans to file a petition with the California Supreme Court after an appellate court denied its request to let Rowe stay while the appeal moves forward.
The county is appealing a judge’s ruling that said the process used to fill the 3rd District supervisor’s seat violated the state’s open-meeting law. The judge also ordered that the appointment be rescinded, giving Gov. Gavin Newsom a chance to pick a new supervisor.
I.E. United, the political advocacy group that sued over the appointment, said the appellate court’s ruling is clear. “She is no longer supervisor,” it said. “She is not supposed to be sitting in any official capacity at all.”
The county’s position is that Rowe is still supervisor until the board rescinds her appointment, which could happen at its next meeting, January 28, at the earliest.
The appellate court’s decision comes two months before the March 3 election, in which Rowe is running for the 3rd district seat against five other candidates. If a candidate wins more than 50 percent of the vote in March, he or she would win. If none gets more than 50 percent, there would be a November runoff between the top two candidates. If the governor appoints someone to the seat, the appointee would serve until the winning candidate is sworn in in December.