Lawsuit against strong mayor initiative online
Sacramento residents can read the new lawsuit challenging the strong mayor initiative here.
Bill Camp, executive secretary of the Sacramento Central Labor Council, is the plaintiff who is suing the city government, the City Council and Thomas Hiltachk, the attorney who wrote the strong mayor initiative.
Mayor Kevin Johnson, who leads the initiative campaign, would have many new responsibilities if voters approve the initiative. In a strong mayor position, Johnson would attain the responsibilities of the city manager and create the city’s budget.
The city currently uses a council/manager system. City Manager Ray Kerridge’s many powers include the ability to draft recommendations for the city’s budget and hire department directors.
Camp’s lawsuit contends that the initiative violates state law because it would create changes to the city’s charter. While an initiative can be used to amend a city charter, it can’t be used to make sweeping changes, Camp argues.
Camp filed the lawsuit as a private citizen, not as a representative of the labor council.
The group SAVE Sacramento supports the lawsuit.
Kathleen Haley is a staff reporter for The Sacramento Press.