BEVERLY HILLS—The Beverly Hills City Council unanimously voted in opposition on Tuesday, July 19 to a proposal by the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors that would amend the County Charter and grant the Supervisors the ability to remove a duly elected Sheriff from office by a four-fifths vote. Mayor Lili Bosse and Councilmember John A. Mirisch requested the item be brought forward for consideration.
“Throughout my years of public service, I don’t believe I’ve ever witnessed such a disgraceful and disgusting overreach of power,” said Mayor Lili Bosse. “The County Supervisors oversee 5.7 million registered voters. Four out of five people should not have the ability to overturn the will of the people. The County Supervisors who initiated and support this proposal are rejecting the sacred democratic process.”
The city of BH indicated in a press release that in fall 2021, the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors directed County Counsel to research how a Los Angeles County Sheriff could be impeached or removed from office. County Counsel indicated a sheriff may be removed from office by one of the following: the election process; convening a civil grand jury; an amendment to the County Charter; or by the authority of the State Attorney General. At its meeting on July 26, 2022, the Board of Supervisors will consider calling a special election on November 8, 2022 to amend the County Charter which would grant the Supervisors the authority to remove a Sheriff by a four-fifths vote for cause.
The Beverly Hills City Council directed a letter of opposition be sent immediately to the Board of Supervisors that reads:
“In a county with 5.7 million registered voters, consolidating the ability to remove the Sheriff by a four-fifths vote of the Board of Supervisors is an affront to democracy and akin to overriding the will of the people. By placing this charter amendment on the November ballot, the Board of Supervisors is granting themselves broad latitude to override the choice of the voters in Los Angeles.
Additionally, the proposed charter amendment appears to undermine the role of the Sheriff and renders the office subordinate to the Board of Supervisors. If the Board of Supervisors truly believes the Sheriff has conducted any activities listed under the “just cause” statements, then it has several other avenues for ending a Sheriff’s term early without needing a charter amendment. For these reasons, the City of Beverly Hills must OPPOSE the motion before the Board of Supervisors on July 26, 2022.”