Thursday, February 5, 2015

Oro Loma board seeks permission to sue for Landis' removal over racial comments

Oro Loma Board Members Laython Landis,
left, and Howard Kerr.
ORO LOMA SANITARY DISTRICT | The Oro Loma Santitary District Board of Directors voted Wednesday to ask for permission from the State Attorney General's office to sue for the removal of long-time board member Laython Landis following his repeated use of a racial slur over the past month.

The Oro Loma board censured Landis last December over his comments made at a committee meeting. The 42-year veteran of the board was also stripped of his committee assignments.

Landis, 88, has resisted numerous calls for his resignation, including the Alameda County Democratic Central Committee.

Over 135,000 residents in San Lorenzo, unincorporated areas of Alameda County and parts of San Leandro and Hayward depend on the sanitary district for recycling and waste services.

Last month, the board asked it counsel to seek steps to remove Landis based on questions over his mental competency.

On Wednesday, the board directed counsel to seek approval from the State Attorney General to sue Landis based on the legal principle of quo warranto. The action is typically used when an elected official's right to the office is in question.

Landis' seat is up for re-election in November 2016, but rumblings of a recall drive have been mentioned as a means to remove him from office.

This week, the California Young Democrats also sent Landis a letter calling for his ouster. "For the good of the community, which needs to heal from the wounds created by your insensitive and unacceptable rhetoric, we join other organizations in asking that you step down from your elected position," said the letter also signed by the Black Young Democrats of the East Bay.


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