The Secretary of State drew the randomized alphabet for the November 6, 2007, election at 11:00 a.m. on August 16 2007, or seven hours before the City Council meeting that was scheduled to determine the ballot order by lot.
Therefore, prior to the Council meeting, it was already known that using the Secretary of State's randomized alphabet would create the following ballot order: Dykwel, Frost, Ross, Espinosa, Burt, Schmid, Nadim, Wallace, Gray, Yeh, Marinos, and Mytels.
As long as the Council has the option of two different ways to determine the ballot order for Council elections, those Council Members who like the ballot order that results from using the randomized alphabet can choose to be absent from the Council meeting scheduled to choose the ballot order to try to prevent the meeting from having a quorum to do business and choose a different ballot order, while those Council Members who do not like the randomized alphabet's ballot order can come to the meeting to try to create a quorum to choose a different ballot order.
If the Council insists on retaining the possibility of choosing its own ballot order, but doesn't want its ability to have a quorum to be influenced by the Secretary of State's randomized alphabet, then the Council meeting must be held before 11:00 a.m. on the Thursday that is 82 days before the election date.
It makes more sense to me to always use the Secretary of State's randomized alphabet and eliminate the August Council meeting.
If necessary, the Council can ask a State legislator to obtain an Attorney General's opinion that using the randomized alphabet satisfies the Charter requirement to choose the ballot order by lot.
We can then return to the original idea of the Council's August vacation and prohibit regular and special meetings of the Council and its standing committees during the Council's vacation.
The Council could still hold emergency meetings during their vacation.