San Francisco City Attorney Dennis Herrera announced today he will go ahead with a civil lawsuit seeking to oust suspended Supervisor Ed Jew from office for allegedly failing to comply with residency requirements.
The city attorney won permission from California Attorney General Jerry Brown on Thursday to file such a lawsuit, but did not immediately say whether he would do so.
“The public interest clearly demands a prompt judicial resolution as to whether the supervisor met the residency requirements to seek or hold his public office,” Herrera said today.
The lawsuit will be the fourth legal proceeding in which Jew, 47, is embroiled. Jew also faces state criminal charges of lying about his residence when he ran for office last year; a federal criminal mail fraud charge
related to alleged extortion of businessmen; and misconduct charges filed by Mayor Gavin Newsombefore the city Ethics Commission.
The misconduct charges and Herrera's planned lawsuit are both civil rather than criminal proceedings and both seek to remove Jew from office. Both are based on claims that Jew, a Chinatown flower shop owner, lived in Burlingame rather than a purported residence in the city's Sunset District before and after being elected to office last November.
Herrera proposed in a letter to the Ethics Commission today that it would be efficient to use the same evidence-gathering procedures for both the forthcoming lawsuit and the commission matter.
That would avoid duplication of effort and maximize Jew's due process rights, Herrera said.
The commission is scheduled to meet at City Hall this afternoon to discuss what procedures to use in weighing the misconduct charges.
Jew's lawyer in the ethics case, Steven Gruel, was not immediately available for comment on Herrera's proposal. Jew was suspended from office by Newsom last month when the mayor initiated the misconduct charges.
— Bay City News