Editorial: Ed Arnold is delaying the inevitable

Why is Ed Arnold delaying the inevitable?

Surely, now that the Arroyo Grande city councilman has been formally charged with five serious felonies for allegedly attacking a city employee, he will vacate his seat.

If not — and if he continues to stay away from meetings — the City Council should initiate the process of replacing him.

While it ordinarily requires a recall vote to kick an elected official out of office, there is a state law that allows replacement of an official who has too many no-shows.

Specifically, if a council member fails to attend a regularly scheduled meeting during a 60-day period — and has no valid excuse for the absences — he can be relieved of duties.

As we’ve said before, we believe that Arnold’s guilt or innocence from a legal standpoint is for the court to decide. But the serious nature of these allegations — coupled with his refusal to come forward and tell his side of the story, if there is one — casts so much doubt on his judgment that we don’t believe he is fit to continue to serve.

Arnold last attended a council meeting on Dec. 8. The calendar is running; if he continues the charade of remaining on the council, his colleagues should replace him at their first opportunity.