A Los Angeles Superior Court judge has ordered Al Robles immediate removal from the Water Replenishment District of Southern California, saying the Carson mayor illegally holds two incompatible offices, in perhaps the final move in a legal drama that has played out since 2015.
Thats when the District Attorneys Office sought the state Attorney Generals approval to file a civil suit seeking to remove Robles from the seat on the districts board of directors he has held since 1992. Robles had refused to step down voluntarily earlier that year, prompting the legal action.
The lawsuit was filed in January 2016 and alleged that the mayor of Carson can not simultaneously sit on a regional water board because that represents a conflict of interest in violation of state law.
Carson is among the cities served by the district and therefore the two government agencies have “overlapping territory, duties and responsibilities, and a clash of duties is likely to arise in the exercise of both offices simultaneously,” the lawsuit alleged.
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Robles was first elected to the Carson City Council in March 2013 and was re-elected as mayor in November 2016.
The final ruling means Robles income is likely to take a big hit.
He makes about $80,000 annually in wages and benefits by sitting on the district board; in contrast, his salary and benefits as Carson mayor total about $54,740.00.
Robles did not immediately respond to a request for comment Friday.
This isnt the first time Robles has run into legal trouble as an elected official.
In Dec. 2016 Robles agreed to pay about $12,000 in fines to the Fair Political Practices Commission after the watchdog found he had repeatedly violated of state campaign-finance law since 2012 in his campaigns for mayor and as a water district board member.