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Bernardi Suit Against City Is Dismissed

September 13, 1994|JULIE TAMAKI

A Superior Court judge Monday dismissed a lawsuit filed by former Councilman Ernani Bernardi against the City of Los Angeles and its redevelopment agency, alleging that agendas relating to a redevelopment project violated the state's public meeting laws.

Bernardi, a fierce critic of redevelopment projects who served on the council for 32 years, has filed four lawsuits against city and county officials over agendas and meetings that he contends have violated the Ralph M. Brown Open Meetings Act. The act requires virtually all government meetings to be held in public, said Jeffrey Cohen, an attorney for Bernardi.

Cohen said the agendas and closed-door meetings have dealt with the city and county's plan to lift a $750-million spending cap on the city's redevelopment project for the central business district and the division of property tax revenues that such a move would create.

A judge dismissed one of the lawsuits Monday, which alleged, among other things, that agendas for a pair of December, 1993, meetings held by the city and its Community Redevelopment Agency violated the Brown Act because they were incomplete and misleading, Cohen said.

For the Record
Los Angeles Times Saturday September 17, 1994 Valley Edition Metro Part B Page 3 Column 5 No Desk 2 inches; 38 words Type of Material: Correction
Bernardi lawsuit--A story in Tuesday's Times incorrectly reported the status of a lawsuit filed by former Councilman Ernani Bernardi against the city of Los Angeles and its Community Redevelopment Agency. A judge gave Bernardi 20 days to submit an amended petition.

But the case is far from over since the same judge also granted Bernardi 20 days to file an amended lawsuit, said June Ailin, an attorney representing the city. The City Council voted in February to spend $50,000 to hire a law firm to fight the suits and increase the spending cap.

Cohen said he plans to file an amended lawsuit, which will again seek a court order to nullify actions taken during the December meetings and also stop city officials from violating the Brown Act in the future. The three other lawsuits are pending.

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