Opinion - County Counsel Can allow BOS to Lift Newson Restrictions with a Legal Opinion!

by Placerville Newswire / Apr 27, 2020 / comments

[Cris Alarcon]

-  G. Smith, "It will be interesting to hear the County counsel perspective on that question"

Cris Alarcon, "Yes it will.
A tremendous amount of pressure coming from many directions. A majke/break moment for a California Government lawyer you could say. We are a very Conservative area in a very Liberal state.
The Counsel's analysis will be very interesting indeed."

G. Smith, "if counsel says no legally would the County consider rejecting his [Gov Newsom] opinion? And if he says yes legally can the supervisors politically not act accordingly?"

Cris Alarcon, "'Cover' also known as an 'Administrative Record.' This would give the BOS legal backing to make such a decision, if they choose to do so. The decision could be challenged but it would take some time [day/weeks] and in the meantime the BOS decision, based on competent legal counsel, would stand.

It is the members of the Board of Supervisors to make the vote.  As long as they have reasonable grounds to make such a vote they are legally covered in their vote.  The county Counsel making an opinion that they may make that call covers the member's vote on the issue to go with the County Counsel's opinion.  Or they can vote to reject the County Counsel's opinion.  Either way they have the officiial Administrative Record to make a vote to reject the Gov's restrictions if the County Councel Opines that they have the power to do so.

If challenged and lost, the lawyer might have future career difficulty. SO, it will be very interesting to see it play out.

It is the members of the Board of Supervisors to make the vote.  As long as they have reasonable grounds to make such a vote they are legally covered in their vote.  The county Counsel making an opinion that they may make that call covers the member's vote on the issue to go with the County Counsel's opinion.  Or they can vote to reject the County Counsel's opinion.  Either way they have the official Administrative Record to make a vote to reject the Gov's restrictions if the County Counsel Opines that they have the power to do so.

Conversely, if the County Counsel would opine that the BOS did NOT have the Authority to remove the Governor’s restrictions they would need to enter into the Record Substantive evidence that they did have that authority or risk having a vote to do so immediately if legally challenged.

That is the power of the “Administrative Record.”

If the Counsel's decision that the BOS had such power and that was challenged and lost, the lawyer might have future career difficulty. SO, it will be very interesting to see it play out.

As an baseline, unlike an Incorporated City the legal basis of a "County" is just a "Subdivision" of the State. A county can make rules even more additive to what the State has made, but it may not counter rules made by the State.  As such I do not see how the Counsel will make an opinion giving the BOS power over the Governor.

Cris Alarcon.