Guest Column: Thinking it through together—opting-out of SB54


As I write this, I am spending this evening getting updates on the Los Alamitos City Council meeting. I can’t predict what all will happen there tonight, but, while the Police, including ours, and Fire are doing an excellent job of keeping the peace, the City of Los Alamitos is still in the middle of a fire storm. Their small staff is overwhelmed, the Go Fund Me page to fund their legal costs has produced just 10% of their needs and their little town is overtaken with press and out-of-towners protesting on both sides.

As a Councilwoman my sworn job is to prudently allocate our resources and at the same time protect our small town. Looking at this issue, I believe, that it would be a misuse of our limited funds to pay lawyers to defend us against those with “open border” agendas rather than pave our streets and keep clean water flowing to homes and waste water flowing from them. It is my sworn responsibility to balance a budget and this year we are having enough trouble just filling pot holes and funding public safety.

I also believe that the fastest way to lose our small town is to go broke and/or be taken over by the State more than we already have been. As a charter city, Seal Beach has the power derived from our City charter to control matters of local concern. But more and more the State Legislature decides that these issues are matters for statewide control. Maintaining our small town is my primary objective as a Councilwoman and was my work as past Mayor.

Saying that, it is also my belief that the State of California needs to obey federal law just as they want us to obey state law. We obviously are in serious need of immigration reform. Illegal immigration is a serious threat to our national and personal security. Legal immigration is our life-blood and what makes us the country we are. Legal immigration is welcome and needed. I am totally against being a Sanctuary State and we are not a Sanctuary City.

Opting out of state law (SB 54), be it through an amicus brief, resolution or filing a lawsuit against the State is a popular stand to take. But, then I have to ask, can we then opt out of all the other State laws we don’t agree with? And who gets to decide for our taxpayers which laws for which we opt-in and from which we opt-out?

But, with all that having been said, Oral Communications is always available at every council meeting at 7pm and those in favor and opposed can make their points at that time for the Council’s consideration.

Ellery Deaton is the City Council represenative for District One, which includes Old Town and Surfside.

Guest Column: Thinking it through together—opting-out of SB54