Court Of Appeal Declines To "Sit On" Board Diversity Judgment

In July, California Secretary of State Shirley Weber filed a petition for a writ of supersedeas in the California Court of Appeal with respect to the trial court's judgment in Crest v. Padilla.  In that case, the trial court permanently enjoined and prohibited from expending or causing any expenditure of the estate, funds, or other property of the State of California on Corporations Code § 301.4 and so much of California Corporations Code §§ 301.3(d) and 2115.6 as pertains to Section 301.4.  Enacted two years ago, Section 301.4 required public company boards of directors to have specified numbers of members of underrepresented communities.  Last April, Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Terry A. Green found that the law  facially violates the Equal Protection Clause of the California Constitution,  Cal. Const. Art. I, § 7.  See Judge Green Explains Why AB 979 Violates The Constitution.

"Supersedeas" is a Latin word formed by the combination of "super" meaning upon or above and "sedere" meaning to sit.  When a Court of Appeal issues a writ of supersedeas it is quite literally telling the court "you should sit on it" ("supersedeas" is a second person, singular, subjunctive, active verb).  A writ of supersedeas suspends the enforcement of a trial court judgment or order while an appeal is pending.   Yesterday, the Second District Court of Appeal declined to tell the trial court to "sit on it" when it denied the Secretary of State's petition for a writ.