Tuesday, July 01, 2008

County of San Diego v. State of California (Cal. Ct. App. - July 1, 2008)

San Diego v. California. San Diego wants the money that the State of California is constitutionally obliged to pay it for unfunded mandates. So it files suit. Alongside Orange County. The trial judge (Judge Bloom, down here in San Diego) agrees with plaintiffs, and awards San Diego and Orange County over $40 million and $70 million, respectively. California appeals.

Guess who wins? Yep. Just our luck. California. Justice Benke says that the Court of Appeal is "sympathetic" to the plight of the counties. Which are, again, definitely owed the money. But separation of powers concerns prevents the judiciary from granting relief.

But fear not. We "trust the integrity of the Legislature to comply with its constitutional and statutory obligations." So we're sure the counties "will be fully reimbursed on their subject claims within the time alloted" under the California Constitution.

Notice the quotation marks. Which do, indeed, demark quoted lines. But they also demark sarcasm. Sure you're sure. I'm sure too. I definitely trust the integrity of the Legislature to pay what's owed. Totally. As certain as I am that tomorrow the sun will rise -- as it does every day -- in the West.