San Bernardino Seal

By Ryan Hagen, The Sun
Posted: 10/18/13, 8:52 PM PDT | Updated: 1 min ago

SAN BERNARDINO >> Word still hasn’t yet spread to all corners of the city that on Thursday one City Council member pled guilty to a felony and resigned and another was charged with multiple felonies, but around City Hall the conversation has already moved to what’s next — not that there’s agreement on that.

Logistically, the procedure to fill 5th Ward Councilman Chas Kelley’s seat is clear enough: The City Charter requires a special election, and municipal code says the date of that election must be at least 90 days after the City Council calls for it.

An item on Monday’s council agenda would set a mail-in election for Feb. 4, which is the date of the expected run-off in the mayoral election and possibly one or more City Council races.

Combining the elections saves money, although a cost estimate is still being calculated and should be known Monday, according to City Clerk Gigi Hanna.

Beyond that, several city officials said focus should immediately shift to other perceived problems.

“What happens next is an election when we should recall (City Attorney James F.) Penman,” said Councilman Fred Shorett. “Until we get rid of Jim Penman, this city is in deep trouble. Our problems are deep and Penman is a huge cause of it.”

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