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Meeting Date:     March 28, 2000

 Subject/Title:      Elimination of the elective office of Mayor

 Submitted by:     Jon Elam, City Manager

 Approved by:      Jon Elam, City Manager


Discuss and provide, as appropriate, direction to City staff concerning the elimination of the elective office of Mayor.


At the General Municipal Election held on April 13, 1982, Measure’s L and M were approved making the office of Mayor an elective office beginning with the Municipal Election in 1984, and every two years thereafter.  The first election for the office of Mayor was held on November 6, 1984, at which time a Mayor was to a two-year term of office. 

 On February 11, 1986 the City Council adopted Resolution No. 86-7 proposing a measure for the elimination of the elective office of Mayor, and thereby reestablish the procedure for selection of the mayor by the City Council.  This measure, which was submitted to the voters at the primary election held on June 3, 1996, was defeated. 


Councilmember Gomes requested this item be added to the agenda.  The City Attorney has prepared the attached report.


 TO:             Mayor and City Councilmembers

 FROM:        Dennis Beougher, City Attorney

 RE:             Elimination of the Elected Mayor Position

             As a general law city, Brentwood is subject to all the constraints imposed by general law.  General law establishes the organizational structure of general law cities.  For example, general law cities are normally governed by a city council of five members, unless a voter approval of a council from four to nine members by or from districts. 

             The mayor of a general law city can be selected in either of two ways:  (1) a vote of the city council appoints a mayor; and (2) upon a vote of the people, a general law city may establish a directly elected mayor, as has occurred in Brentwood.   

 The process for an elected mayor’s office is begun by a city council action to place a measure on the ballot, the form of ballot language is controlled by state statutes. The measure must ask if the voters prefer the elected mayor’s office to have a two-year or a four-year term, although through a subsequent election  the term can be altered from two to four years, and vice versa.  If the voters approve the measure, one of the council seats on the next ballot is designated the mayor’s seat and the post is filled by a subsequent election.           

 Elimination of Office of Elected Mayor

 If an elected mayor exists, the City Council may ask the voters to eliminate the office of elected mayor, pursuant to Government Code section 34902(b).   If such measure passes, the office of mayor expires with the term of its incumbent.   

For your convenience, Government Code section 34902(b) is provided as follows:

(b)        After an office of elective mayor has been established, the city council may subsequently submit to the electors the question of whether or not to eliminate the elective office of mayor, pursuant to the procedures enumerated in this article, and thereby reestablish the procedure for the selection of the mayor by the city council.   If the majority of the votes cast on the proposition are in favor of the elimination of the office of the elective mayor, the office shall be eliminated on the expiration date of the incumbent’s term, and on the date the procedure of selection of the mayor by the city council shall be reestablished.     

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