An emergency ordinance that would have prohibited demolition and rebuilding of nonconforming buildings was blocked Tuesday night, to the relief of a dozen residents who had entreated the council to vote against the measure.
The ordinance required four of the five council votes for passage. Councilman Tony DeBellis, who sponsored the measure, was absent and Mayor John Cioffi voted against it.
A City Hall spokesman said DeBellis was out of town and did not realize that the ordinance needed four votes.
Councilman Jim Rosenberger requested that the ordinance be considered again May 12.
Councilwoman June Williams said the ordinance would be a stopgap measure to close a loophole that allows residents with nonconforming property to rebuild without conforming to current codes, especially regarding number of units and parking spaces.
In voting against the ordinance, Cioffi said he agreed with residents who questioned whether an emergency exists.
"An emergency is defined as something which poses a threat to the health, safety or welfare of the city of Hermosa," he said. "I don't see that threat."