Vernon has become the center of a vast and costly power struggle, as state officials have embarked on an extraordinary campaign to legally abolish the city and make it part of Los Angeles County. John A. Pérez, the Democratic speaker of the State Assembly, is the chief sponsor of legislation to disincorporate Vernon. He described it as a shell city created to enrich municipal officials and businesses at the expense of the struggling, lower-middle-class communities that surround it.
This tiny city has responded with a sophisticated, high-priced battle with the trappings of a national campaign. It has hired a fleet of some of the highest-paid lobbyists, lawyers, political consultants and communications experts in the country. Lawyers are being paid $550 an hour and lobbying firms $12,000 a month. Vernon officials argued that businesses would shut down if Vernon is disincorporated, that the Legislature has no legal standing to abolish it and that corruption here has been cleaned up.
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What do you think? Does this violate the State Constitution by disenfranchising voters in Vernon? Can a county just dissolve a municipality without the consent of the city?