Citizen Testimony to GCRC


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4 PM Gresham Charter Review Meeting. Third Floor City Hall!

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Citizen Testimony to GCRC

  1. 1. Citizen Testimony to GCRC Richard Strathern October 27, Meeting
  2. 2. Evaluate Current CRC Work Process• The Charter Review Committee is now far enough into its work schedule to review its process to date for completeness of process design and implementation – Key questions: 1. 1. Are we organized for best practices research and benchmarking completeness? 2. 2. Is our planned outreach to citizen base and stakeholders community proving effective? 3. 3. Will our planned tentative decision making process include citizen feedback prior to final recommendation to City Council? Evaluation CRC Process 2
  3. 3. Suggested Focus Areas for Inclusion• By priority – Government Structure-Review Strong Mayor Council vs. Weak Mayor Council – Eliminate 60% super majority vote to change city charter by electorate and return to 50% requirement – District Elections of City Council and Election at Large for Mayor and Council President (see mixed model handout) – Election of City Auditor – Term Limits – Citizen e-engagement via city website forums to increase democratic involvement Evaluation CRC Process 3
  4. 4. Mayor’s Role in City over 100,000• Should the Mayor Sit and Vote as a Member of the City Council?• Should the Mayor have Veto Power?• Who Should Appoint/Remove City Charter Officers?• Who Should Appoint/Remove The City Manager?• Who Should Appoint/Remove City Employees?• Budget Authority?• Should there be Term Limits for Mayor and City Council? Evaluation CRC Process 4
  5. 5. Risks?• Risks – Will inadequate citizen engagement in eight year review process lead to city’s inability to adapt and change where needed? – Will inadequate stakeholder involvement strengthen perception that the City Charter is an unimportant document failing to empower community resources for public good? – Might inadequate direction from City Council as it relates to their concerns and issues as feedback to CRC verify to the general public that our public servants are more committed to serving the “special interest community” over citizen interests? Evaluation CRC Process 5
  6. 6. Conclusion• The Committee has been appointed by the City Council to review the City’s current charter and make recommendations to the City Charter for updating and improving the constitutional basis for effective governance• It is not too late for the CRC to demonstrate accountability and responsibility by revising the review process to insure adequate citizen and stakeholder involvement through education, information and the solicitation of feedback prior to final recommendations to City Council. Evaluation CRC Process 6