Ex-Mayor Seeks Reinstatement

Diamond Bar City Councilman Paul Horcher, ousted a month ago as mayor pro tem, is accusing his fellow council members of violating state law in removing him, and has demanded the post back.

At Tuesday night's council meeting, Horcher said council members violated the Ralph M. Brown Act when they discussed his potential ouster days before they formally voted to remove him and to appoint Councilman Gary Werner to the position.

"I am asking that their action be rescinded for blatant disregard of the Brown Act," Horcher said, passing out to the City Council copies of a letter from his attorney, Carlos F. Negrete.

The act, which requires government officials to hold meetings in public under most circumstances, prohibits one council member from telephoning or meeting with other council members for purposes of reaching a decision, City Atty. Andrew Arczynski said. However, he noted, he does not believe the act was violated in this case.

Mayor Phyllis Papen proposed Horcher's ouster after he personally attacked Councilman Gary Miller, then a candidate for state Senate, and accused him of conflict of interest.

Tuesday, the mayor denied violating the Brown Act. She said she telephoned the three other council members "to tell them I was putting it on the agenda. We did not make a decision."

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