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Legal Opinions - Yearly Index

Opinions published in 2004

Opinion Question Conclusion Published
04-907 Are Paul Bowlen and John Crawley unlawfully serving as members of the Cerritos City Council due to seeking reelection within two years of serving two consecutive terms on the city council contrary to the provisions of the city charter? Whether Paul Bowlen and John Crawley are unlawfully serving as members of the Cerritos City Council due to seeking reelection within two years of serving two consecutive terms on the city council contrary to the provisions of the city charter does not present a substantial issue of fact or law requiring judicial resolution.

Official Citation: 87 Ops.Cal.Atty.Gen. 176
12/20/2004
04-904 Is Blanca Estella Rubio unlawfully holding the office of director of the Valley County Water District since she simultaneously holds the office of trustee of the Baldwin Park Unified School District? Whether Blanca Estella Rubio is unlawfully holding the office of director of the Valley County Water District since she simultaneously holds the office of trustee of the Baldwin Park Unified School District presents substantial issues of fact and law requiring judicial resolution.

Official Citation: 87 Ops.Cal.Atty.Gen. 153
11/08/2004
04-704 In light of the prohibition against discrimination based upon age contained in the Planning and Zoning Law, may a city adopt a zoning ordinance or issue a conditional use permit that limits a specified parcel of land to use as a mobilehome park for senior citizens? Notwithstanding the prohibition against discrimination based upon age contained in the Planning and Zoning Law, a city may adopt a zoning ordinance or issue a conditional use permit that limits a specified parcel of land to use as a mobilehome park for senior citizens.

Official Citation: 87 Ops.Cal.Atty.Gen. 148
10/20/2004
04-501 May a school district charge an application fee of $20 to cover its costs of processing an interdistrict attendance request submitted by a pupil residing within another district? A school district may not charge an application fee of $20 to cover its costs of processing an interdistrict attendance request submitted by a pupil residing within another district.

Official Citation: 87 Ops.Cal.Atty.Gen. 132
09/14/2004
04-401 Is a copy of a private check that was obtained by the Fair Political Practices Commission through issuance of an administrative subpoena during the investigation of a complaint exempt from disclosure under the Public Records Act? Is a copy of a private check that was obtained by the Fair Political Practices Commission through issuance of an administrative subpoena during the investigation of a complaint exempt from disclosure under the Public Records Act?

Official Citation: 87 Ops.Cal.Atty.Gen. 181
12/22/2004
04-310 May Jack Goodrich simultaneously hold the two offices of county veterans service officer and undersheriff for the County of Inyo? Whether Jack Goodrich may simultaneously hold the two offices of county veterans service officer and undersheriff for the County of Inyo does not present a substantial issue of fact or law requiring judicial resolution.

Official Citation: 87 Ops.Cal.Atty.Gen. 142
10/14/2004
04-309 May ahospital district board of directors enter into a lease agreement with a healthcare district director if the healthcare district board of directors is required to approve the agreement under the terms of a separate lease between the hospital district and the healthcare district? A hospital district board of directors may not enter into a lease agreement with a healthcare district director if the healthcare district board of directors is required to approve the agreement under the terms of a separate lease between the hospital district and the healthcare district.

Official Citation: 87 Ops.Cal.Atty.Gen. 92
07/09/2004
04-303 1. With respect to a board of retirement that has appointed personnel under the 1937 County Employee's Retirement Law, are capital expenses incurred in the operation of the retirement system to be treated as an "expense of administration" subject to the annual limitation on "expense incurred" by the system?

2. If so, are capital expenses to be accounted for on an accrual basis in accordance with standards established by the State Controller and the Governmental Accounting Standards Board, which allocate capital expenses to the periods when the assets are used?
1. With respect to a board of retirement that has appointed personnel under the 1937 County Employees' Retirement Law, capital expenses incurred in the operation of the retirement system are to be treated as an "expense of administration" subject to the annual limitation on "expense incurred" by the system.

2. Capital expenses incurred by a board of retirement that has appointed personnel under the 1937 County Employees' Retirement Law are to be accounted for on an accrual basis in accordance with standards established by the State Controller and the Governmental Accounting Standards Board, which allocate capital expenses to the periods when the assets are used.

Official Citation: 87 Ops.Cal.Atty.Gen. 136
10/13/2004
04-207 May a city council reimburse a council member for actual and necessary expenses incurred in attending the Governor's inauguration? A city council may reimburse a council member for actual and necessary expenses incurred in attending the Governor's inauguration if the council member performed official duties while at the inauguration.

Official Citation: 87 Ops.Cal.Atty.Gen. 164
11/18/2004
04-206 May a city enact an ordinance restricting vehicle engine idling for the purpose of controlling or mitigating vehicle emissions? A city may enact an ordinance restricting vehicle engine idling for the purpose of controlling or mitigating vehicle emissions if (1) the city has been delegated authority to do so by an air pollution control district or by an air quality management district, (2) the ordinance imposes more stringent engine idling requirements than imposed by such district and is otherwise authorized by law, or (3) the ordinance seeks to abate a nuisance.

Official Citation: 87 Ops.Cal.Atty.Gen. 96
07/12/2004
04-201 May the children's services inspector general of a county, an officer within the department of the auditor-controller appointed by the board of supervisors to identify county program improvements to prevent the recurrence of child deaths due to neglect or abuse, inspect the juvenile case file of a deceased child without issuance of a prior court order? The children’s services inspector general of a county, an officer within the department of auditor-controller created by the board of supervisors to identify county program improvements to prevent the recurrence of child deaths due to neglect or abuse, may not inspect the juvenile case file of a deceased child without issuance of a prior court order.

Official Citation: 87 Ops.Cal.Atty.Gen. 72
06/02/2004
04-112 1. May a school district require that a student obtain written parental consent prior to releasing the student from school to receive confidential medical services?

2. May a school district adopt a policy pursuant to which the district will notify a parent when a student leaves school t receive confidential medical services?
1. A school district may not require that a student obtain written parental consent prior to releasing the student from school to receive confidential medical services.

2. A school district may not adopt a policy pursuant to which the district will notify a parent when a student leaves school to obtain confidential medical services.

Official Citation: 87 Ops.Cal.Atty.Gen. 168
11/29/2004
04-110 May a school district use Proposition 39 school bond proceeds to pay the salaries of district employees who perform administrative oversight work on construction projects authorized by a voter approved bond measure? A school district may use Proposition 39 school bond proceeds to pay the salaries of district employees to the extent they perform administrative oversight work on construction projects authorized by a voter approved bond measure.

Official Citation: 87 Ops.Cal.Atty.Gen. 157
11/09/2004
04-109 1. Is Tommy Monreal unlawfully holding the office of city council member of the City of Huron because he was not a city resident at the time of his election?

2. Is Jose Diaz unlawfully holding the office of city council member of the City of Huron because Tommy Monrreal was not a city resident when he acted as a proponent of the recall election resulting in Mr. Diaz's election to office?

3. Is Francisco Chavez unlawfully holding the office of trustee of the Coalinga-Huron School District because Tommy Monrreal was not a school district resident when he acted as a proponent of the recall election resulting in Mr. Chavez's election to office?
1. The question whether Tommy Monreal is unlawfully holding the office of city council member of the City of Huron does not present a substantial issue of fact or law requiring judicial resolution.

2. The question whether Jose Diaz is unlawfully holding the office of city council member of the City of Huron does not present a substantial issue of fact or law requiring judicial resolution.

3. The question whether Francisco Chavez is unlawfully holding the office of trustee of the Coalinga-Huron Unified School District does not present a substantial issue of fact or law requiring judicial resolution.

Official Citation: 87 Ops.Cal.Atty.Gen. 30
04/06/2004
04-103 A business that provides services requiring a license, certification, or registration pursuant to the Business and Professions Code may conduct its activities as a limited liability company if the services rendered require only a nonprofessional, occupational license. A business that provides services requiring a license, certification, or registration pursuant to the Business and Professions Code may conduct its activities as a limited liability company if the services rendered require only a nonprofessional, occupational license

Official Citation: 87 Ops.Cal.Atty.Gen. 109
07/23/2004
04-101 May a regional financial development corporation guarantee a loan based upon funds that were transferred by the Legislature from the Small Business Expansion Fund to the General Fund pursuant to the Budge Act of 2002-2003? A regional financial development corporation may not guarantee a loan based upon funds that were transferred by the Legislature from the Small Business Expansion Fund to the General Fund pursuant to the Budget Act of 2002-2003.

Official Citation: 87 Ops.Cal.Atty.Gen. 81
06/03/2004
03-1205 Does a certified used oil collection center's liability exemption for used oil collected from the public apply to used oil generated by the collection center's own oil-change business? A certified used oil collection center's liability exemption for used oil collected from the public does not apply to used oil generated by the collection center's own oil-change business.

Official Citation: 87 Ops.Cal.Atty.Gen. 128
09/09/2004
03-1204 May a private security firm, pursuant to a contract with a property owner, immobilize a vehicle that is impermissibly parked in a private parking lot by affixing a "boot" device to the vehicle? A private security firm, acting pursuant to a contract with a property owner, may not immobilize a vehicle that is impermissibly parked in a private parking lot by affixing a "boot" device to the vehicle.

Official Citation: 87 Ops.Cal.Atty.Gen. 114
08/12/2004
03-1201 When a physician testifies as an expert in a civil proceeding regarding the applicable standard of medical care and whether the defendant has breached that standard, may the physician, on the basis of his or her testimony, be held liable in a subsequent tort action brought by the adverse party or be subject to professional discipline by the Medical Board of California? When a physician testifies as an expert in a civil proceeding regarding the applicable standard of medical care and whether the defendant has breached that standard, the physician may not, on the basis of his or her testimony, be held liable in a subsequent tort action brought by the adverse party, but may be subject to professional discipline by the Medical Board of California if the testimony constitutes unprofessional conduct.

Official Citation: 87 Ops.Cal.Atty.Gen. 48
04/28/2004
03-1108 May a county recorder accept for recordation a document denominated a "memorandum of lease" that states that the parties have executed a certain unrecorded lease, describes various terms of the lease, is signed, and includes a certificate acknowledgment by both parties? A county recorder may accept for recordation a document denominated a "memorandum of lease" that states that the parties have executed a certain unrecorded lease, describes various terms of the lease, is signed, and includes a certificate of acknowledgment by both parties.

Official Citation: 87 Ops.Cal.Atty.Gen. 87
06/09/2004
03-1107 Is the governing board of a jointly administered trust fund, whose members are appointed equally by a city and a labor union representing city employees and whose purpose is to address labor-management issues relating to the health, safety, and training of city employees, required to hold its meetings open to the public? The governing board of a jointly administered trust fund, whose members are appointed equally by a city and a labor union representing city employees and whose purpose is to address labor-management issues relating to the health, safety, and training of city employees, is not required to hold its meetings open to the public.

Official Citation: 87 Ops.Cal.Atty.Gen. 19
02/24/2004
03-1102 1. Is an insurer required to report to the California Architects Board a settlement or arbitration award exceeding $5,000 that involves a claim or action for damages alleging that an insured architect has engaged in wrongful conduct?

2. What type of "settlement" of what type of "claim" must an insurer report to the California Architects Board?

3. Is an insurer required to report to the California Architects Board a settlement or arbitration award exceeding $5,000 that is paid on behalf of an architectural firm, where the claim or action for damages alleges that there was wrongful conduct with respect to the architectural services performed?
1. An insurer is required to report to the California Architects Board a settlement or arbitration award exceeding $5,000 that involves a claim or action for damages alleging that an insured architect has engaged in wrongful conduct.

2. A "settlement" of a "claim" that an insurer must report to the California Architects Board is any agreement which resolves all or part of a demand for money that is based upon an insured architect's alleged wrongful conduct.

3. An insurer is required to report to the California Architects Board a settlement or arbitration award exceeding $5,000 that is paid on behalf of an architectural firm, where the claim or action for damages alleges that there was wrongful conduct with respect to the architectural services performed.

Official Citation: 87 Ops.Cal.Atty.Gen. 121
08/26/2004
03-1006 1. Does the common law prohibition against holding incompatible offices cause a county officer to forfeit his or her office when accepting a standby appointment for the office of county supervisor?

2. Would the common law prohibition against holding incompatible offices cause a county officer to forfeit his or her office by temporarily filling the standby office of county supervisor during a state of emergency?
1. The common law prohibition against holding incompatible offices does not cause a county officer to forfeit his or her office when accepting a standby appointment for the office of county supervisor.

2. The common law prohibition against holding incompatible offices would not cause a county officer to forfeit his or her office by temporarily filling the standby office of county supervisor during a state of emergency.

Official Citation: 87 Ops.Cal.Atty.Gen. 54
04/29/2004
03-1005 In light of a school district's broad authority to conduct its programs and activities, may a school district assess a fee upon providers of deferred compensation plans to cover its costs of administering the plans for district employees? Even though a school district has broad authority to conduct its programs and activities, it may not assess a fee upon providers of deferred compensation plans to cover its costs of administering the plans for district employees.

Official Citation: 87 Ops.Cal.Atty.Gen. 14
02/18/2004
03-902 Is the state or a county responsible for the payment of the costs of (1) a report required before a court may consider suspension of a defendant's sentence, where the defendant has been convicted of a lewd or lascivious act on a minor under 14, (2) an examination of a defendant's mental competency, (3) an examination of a defendant, who has been convicted of a felony, to determine whether an involuntary civil commitment should be made due to narcotics addiction, (4) an examination of a person, in the absence of a criminal proceeding, to determine whether a civil commitment should be made due to narcotics addiction, (5) an examination and testimony in connection with an involuntary civil commitment of a person believed to be imminently dangerous to others, (6) evaluations and counsel regarding a civil commitment due to an inmate being a sexually violent predator, and (7) an examination of a defendant where a plea of "not guilty by reason of insanity" has been entered? The state is responsible for the payment of the costs of (1) a report required before a court may consider suspension of a defendant's sentence, where the defendant has been convicted of a lewd or lascivious act on a minor under 14, (2) an examination of a defendant's mental competency, (3) an examination of a defendant, who has been convicted of a felony, to determine whether an involuntary civil commitment should be made due to narcotics addiction, (4) an examination of a person, in the absence of a criminal proceeding, to determine whether a civil commitment should be made due to narcotics addiction, (5) an examination and testimony in connection with an involuntary civil commitment of a person believed to be imminently dangerous to others. A county is responsible for the payment of the costs of (6) evaluations and counsel regarding a civil commitment due to an inmate being a sexually violent predator, and (7) an examination of a defendant where a plea of "not guilty by reason of insanity" has been entered.

Official Citation: 87 Ops.Cal.Atty.Gen. 62
05/13/2004
03-806 May cottontail and brush rabbits that are eating landscaping, ornamental, plants, or gardens be trapped or killed? Cottontail and brush rabbits that are eating landscaping, ornamental plants, or gardens may be trapped or killed if it can be established that they are materially harming such plants.

Official Citation: 87 Ops.Cal.Atty.Gen. 42
04/27/2004
03-805 May an airport land use commission exempt a specific plan adopted by a city or county from compliance with the commission's more stringent compatibility standards for land use, development density, and development intensity in the vicinity of a public use airport? An airport land use commission may not exempt a specific plan adopted by a city or county from compliance with the commission's more stringent compatibility standards for land use, development density, and development intensity in the vicinity of a public use airport.

Official Citation: 87 Ops.Cal.Atty.Gen. 102
07/22/2004
03-804 Is an independent fire protection district eligible to receive Proposition 172 monies under the Local Public Safety Protection and Improvement Act of 1993? An independent fire protection district is eligible to receive Proposition 172 monies under the Local Public Safety Protection and Improvement Act of 1993.

Official Citation: 87 Ops.Cal.Atty.Gen. 1
01/30/2004
03-705 Where streets within a residential subdivision adjacent to an airport are owned and maintained by an airport district but are part of the county road system, is the airport district or the county responsible for regulating the operation of aircraft on the streets? Where streets within a residential subdivision adjacent to an airport are owned and maintained by an airport district but are part of the county road system, the county is solely responsible for regulating the operation of aircraft on the streets.

Official Citation: 87 Ops.Cal.Atty.Gen. 36
04/07/2004
03-508 May the governing board of a school district avoid the conflict of interest provisions of Government Code section 1090 by adopting a policy delegating to the district superintendent its authority to contract on behalf of the district and thus allow the superintendent to approve a promotion for the spouse of a member of the governing board as well as lease school equipment from a firm that employs the spouse of another board member? The governing board of a school district may not avoid the conflict of interest provisions of Government Code section 1090 by adopting a policy delegating to the district superintendent its authority to contract on behalf of the district and thus allow the superintendent to approve a promotion for the spouse of a member of the governing board as well as lease school equipment from a firm that employs the spouse of another board member.

Official Citation: 87 Ops.Cal.Atty.Gen. 9
02/11/2004
03-401 May a county transportation authority reimpose a retail transactions and use tax for an additional period of time without first adopting a new county transportation expenditure plan? A county transportation authority may not reimpose a retail transactions and use tax for an additional period of time without first adopting a new county transportation expenditure plan.

Official Citation: 87 Ops.Cal.Atty.Gen. 5
02/05/2004
02-206 May the governing board of a school district employ a teacher as a permanent employee if she has been a probationary teacher for more than one year before her spouse became a member of the governing board? The governing board of a school district may employ a teacher as a permanent employee if she has been a probationary teacher for more than one year before her spouse became a member of the governing board.

Official Citation: 87 Ops.Cal.Atty.Gen. 23
02/26/2004

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