From The OC Register:
ANAHEIM – Mayor Tom Tait on Monday morning was stripped of the ability to place items onto City Council meeting agendas whenever he wants – one of the few powers, beyond those of regular council members, he wielded as the elected head of Orange County’s largest city.
The move came during an unusually early special meeting called for 8 a.m. by the City Council majority, which voted 4-1 to change the policy on how items are added to the agenda. Now, all City Council members must place items onto future agendas during the “council communications” held at the close of a meeting.
The policy change is less restrictive than the idea suggested last week by Councilman Jordan Brandman, who wanted agenda items to be called by two members of the City Council.
Before the vote, each of the council members in the majority repeatedly characterized the move as an “administrative clean-up.”
“I think it was a mean-spirited act. It was bullying by the council and it hurts the office of the mayor and the way the city operates,” said Tait, who cast the dissenting vote. “I don’t know how the city will operate if the mayor or members of the council can’t place items on the agenda in between meetings.”
Brandman requested the policy change last week, when the City Council held a 90-minute debate that essentially rehashed the same set of arguments made Sept. 3 about the ongoing lease re-negotiations for Angel Stadium.
At the start of Monday’s meeting, Tait said the stadium lease should be discussed during every third City Council meeting until the negotiations are completed.
“If you’re going to be asking things (be added to the agenda), it should be done in a public venue at the dais,” Councilwoman Kris Murray said. “There’s nothing harmful here. You’ll still be able to add things whenever you want.”
A couple of dozen people spoke during the meeting in opposition to the council’s move to limit the mayor. None supported the plan.
“(Brandman) wants to stifle the mayor (concerning) things that need public debate,” said Amin David of the community group Los Amigos.
Kandis Richardson, head of the Renew West Anaheim Committee, said she is considering moving from the city because of how the council majority consistently votes against the mayor’s will.
“I’m working toward cleaning up the city on the west side, and you guys want to take the mayor and beat him into the ground,” Richardson said. “I thought you guys were all on the city’s side and my side, but I don’t think you are.”