• Story alerts
  • Letter to Editor
  • Pin it

— When Tony Young confesses his voting error, Peters also tells the council, "I would like to move that we reconsider the last vote." The video replay shows that he says this almost before Young has finished speaking. Moments earlier, while the council takes a short break between agenda items, Hazard searches the video for signs that Young is being talked into reconsidering an expected vote by Peters and three of the developer's supporters, who by this time of the night were the only people left in the audience. Although discussion before a vote must often happen, Hazard says, "That was fishy."

Councilwoman Donna Frye responds, "Most of the people have left, and I guess that's really bothering me. If we reconsider, then do we hold another hearing? And of the three people in the audience, [now] there is no one from the other side. After everybody leaves, it doesn't feel right."

But Councilman Ralph Inzunza retorts, "It's unfortunate that people have left here, but there's no way in heck I'm going to do this again."

The remark seems to ignite a remonstrance in the mayor. He already has requested advice from the city attorney's representative in attendance, who lays out several legal options. "Mr. Inzunza," says Murphy, "this is something that's likely to get us into potential litigation. [The city attorney's advice] is protecting your behind by insisting she put on the record what the rules are, so that when we vote and it's wrong, it's not your fault and you're not sued personally.... Maybe you should have noticed that things have happened in the last six months."

"I like that," says Hazard. "He's on the right side, and he's very passionate. If he had been like that all along, he'd probably be remaining as our mayor."

The council does reconsider Paseo and holds one more roll call. Young reverses his earlier vote, all the other members maintain theirs, and Zucchet's motion to uphold the appeal and reject the project is defeated five to four, the same margin as in the first vote.

But Zucchet says that he had hoped to put "other alternatives" on the table. And Murphy confesses uneasiness. "I just have to say for the record," he says, "I'm...shockingly in sympathy with Ms. Frye's position on this."

And so the council decides at last to schedule a continuance on the Paseo de Mission Hills deliberations for July 19. Another roll call vote will be taken at that time, when all parties interested in the matter can return to present arguments again. By then, San Diego's mayor will no longer be Dick Murphy, who leaves office on July 15. And, providing his corruption trial comes out in his favor, Michael Zucchet will preside over the vote as acting mayor.

  • Story alerts
  • Letter to Editor
  • Pin it


Sign in to comment

Win a $25 Gift Card to
The Broken Yolk Cafe

Join our newsletter list

Each newsletter subscription means another chance to win!