April 1, 2012 - Emails show county reminded city clerk of cut-off date to get resolutions on ballot
Paper: Orange County Register, The (Santa Ana, CA)
Title: Emails show county reminded city clerk of cut-off date to get resolutions on ballot. Costa Mesa misses crucial charter deadline
Date: April 1, 2012
Author: Sean Greene; The Orange County Register
COSTA MESA - City Clerk Julie Folcik received several emails from county elections officials reminding her of the March 9 deadline to get the proposed city charter on the June 5 ballot, records show.
On March 10, Folcik emailed the City Council resolutions calling for the charter ballot initiative to the Orange County Registrar of Voters, but the office refused to accept the filings. A judge last week upheld the state-mandated deadline, and Folcik has been placed on paid administrative leave, pending a personnel investigation.
A manager in the Registrar of Voters office reminded Folcik of the March 9 deadline on Nov. 9, Dec. 5, Feb. 28 and March 8, according to emails between Folcik and registrar staff obtained by The Orange County Register through a California Public Records request.
"Be sure to get the (resolutions) to us by Friday to put the measure on the ballot. That can't wait until Monday by statute," Kay Cotton, candidate and voter services manager, wrote March 8.
Folcik responded the next day around 3 p.m. but did not email the resolutions for another 24 hours after an urgent message from Registrar Neal Kelley.
The Registrar extended the deadline for the initiative's ballot arguments and the city attorney's impartial analysis from March 9 to March 12. According to a March 13 statement from the city, Folcik believed the deadline for the resolutions also had been extended.
The City Council passed its resolutions committing the charter – or local constitution – to the June primary ballot March 6. Ballot arguments were due to Folcik by March 8. In a Feb. 27 email to the Registrar's office, Folcik promised to turn the documents in by the March 9 deadline. "I know it is cutting it close. I am sorry about that," Folcik wrote.
Folcik began corresponding with county elections officials in December when Councilman Jim Righeimer proposed that Costa Mesa become a charter city.
"I have a timeline and it looks like we are going to be cutting it close as to when documents are due to you," Folcik wrote on Dec. 2.
Cotton responded days later, confirming the deadlines and wrote, "The earlier the better!"
Dateline: COSTA MESA
Record Number: 220548498
Copyright 2012 The Orange County Register