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Charter Reform Group OKs Compromise Proposal

From a Times Staff Writer

The second of two commissions charged with forging a new Los Angeles City Charter approved a hard-fought compromise version Saturday, taking one of the final steps toward putting a far-reaching government reform proposal before voters in June.

The unanimous vote by the Elected Charter Reform Commission came after more than three hours of discussion, including a closed-door session to lay out a negotiating position when the commission meets Monday with city union leaders over a handful of outstanding personnel issues.

The commission went along with a compromise position its leaders had reached earlier this week with members of a City Council-appointed panel that had been working on a rival proposal for overhauling the aging, complicated charter.

As expected, the elected commission approved the compromise version and signed a transmittal letter but stuck by its intention to hold off sending the letter to the city clerk until the City Council agrees to put the measure on the ballot without changes.

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Traces of the political battles that had marked the nearly two years of work on the reform proposal remained in evidence Saturday, particularly in last-ditch efforts by some commissioners to revisit some issues. But what differences or disappointments remained did not show up in the vote.

“It’s unanimous! We did it!” Chairman Erwin Chemerinsky exclaimed after the vote.

The City Council has until Friday to put the measure on the June 8 ballot. If it does not act by Wednesday, however, Chemerinsky said the elected commission will reconvene Wednesday evening to consider its alternatives.


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