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HERRERA TO APPEAL PROPOSITION N RULING San Francisco City Attorney Dennis Herrera plans today to appeal a superior court judge’s decision that struck down part of the “Care Not Cash” measure voters passed in November. “Our position has been that the right of voters to self-governance through the initiative process under the California constitution is inviolable,” said Matt Dorsey, a spokesman for the city attorney. Superior Court Judge Ronald Quidachay’s ruling in May struck down the changes to only one of four homeless aid programs addressed by Proposition N. He found that the power to set standards for the so-called general assistance program is delegated to the Board of Supervisors, not voters, and ordered the city not to implement the changes in Prop N that pertain to the city’s GA program. Under Prop N, the city would reduce cash payments to poor or disabled homeless adults who qualify for the four aid programs, collectively known as the County Adult Assistance Programs, based on the value of available services such as housing. Quidachay’s ruling has pushed implementation of the entire measure into limbo, in part because it’s expected to have a ripple effect on the changes planned for the other three programs. Since Quidachay’s decision, Supervisor Gavin Newsom, the mayoral candidate who sponsored the measure, has urged the Board of Supervisors to pass Prop N as is. The San Francisco Chronicle reported Wednesday that he appeared one vote short of the majority needed to pass it. Whatever the board decides, the city attorney intends to press the appeal, Dorsey said. “This appeal is dealing with the legal question of whether voters have a right to change the way [general assistance] is administered,” he said. “In our view, it’s not a policy question.” – Pam Smith N.Y. DISPUTE OVER JUDGES CREATES DELAY NEW YORK — A dispute between Gov. George Pataki and U.S. Sen. Charles Schumer, D-N.Y., over how much say each will have in the nomination of federal trial judges in New York state is delaying the scheduling of hearings for six district court nominees, sources report. Those sources say that until the Democrats lost control of the Senate in November, Sen. Schumer had sought to have a controlling voice on one of every two district court nominations put forward by President Bush, while the governor is now seeking to control two of every three nominations. The dispute has simmered since the 2000 election, when Bush was elected president and Hillary Rodham Clinton was elected senator. With a Republican president, two Democratic senators in New York and a Republican governor, it has been unclear who would have the dominant voice on district court nominations. For decades, New York’s two senators operated under an agreement that when one senator was from a different party than the president, the minority senator would still be allowed to control the recommendation of one of every four candidates for the district court. Of the six pending nominations, two have not been acted on for nearly a year. Sources identified four of the candidates as being sponsored by Pataki: Richard Holwell, a partner at White & Case; Appellate Division, Second Department, Justice Sandra Feuerstein; P. Kevin Castel, a partner at Cahill Gordon & Reindel; and former Court of Claims Judge Dora Irizarry. Stephen Robinson, a former U.S. attorney for the District of Connecticut is considered Sen. Schumer’s candidate. – The New York Law Journal

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