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Santa Clarita / Antelope Valley : Council Sticks by Its Guns on Time Limit


PALMDALE — The City Council, in its first test of a new system that imposes an 11:30 p.m. curfew on its meetings, passed with flying colors Wednesday by adjourning on time despite a long list of undone items.

Under a plan passed last month to curb once-a-month council sessions that had regularly dragged past midnight, the council instead held a second meeting Thursday to finish its business. That will be the future pattern for council sessions.

"I feel good," Mayor Jim Ledford said after Wednesday's session. "All in all, I think the format is good. We'll be clear-headed Thursday night."

The mayor proposed the change after getting fed up last May with a meeting went from 7 p.m. until 1:30 a.m.

Under the new system, the once-a-month council sessions will be held on the second Wednesday of each month. And if the council fails to complete its business by 11:30 p.m., it is supposed to finish up its agenda the next night. However, council meetings can go later if its members agree to it.

About 11:20 p.m. Wednesday, after long discussions on mobile-home rent control and a controversial park-and-ride project consumed most of the council's time, and with a long agenda still ahead, Councilwoman Teri Jones proposed extending the meeting an hour until 12:30 a.m.

But after some discussion, and noting this was their first test under the new system, council members agreed to call it quits at 11:32 p.m. with no extension.

"If we don't try this the way we set it up, it's probably going to happen every time," Councilman Joe Davies said of the extensions.

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