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Emergency Charter Amendment


The City of Sidney is introducing Charter Amendments on the November 8th Election. Electors from the City will be asked to vote on 3 separate issues. To avoid confusion the Electors will be simply asked to choose Yes or No on adopting each resolution. A City Charter is like the Constitution of the city.

These Changes will greater facilitate the operation of City Government.


First photo of City council

Section 2-8


Current

SECTION 2-8. VACANCIES. presently reads: If any member of the Council shall die, resign or be disqualified, the remaining members of the Council shall, by the concurrence of at least four votes, choose his successor who shall serve during the remainder of the unexpired term. Should such vacancy occur between election and taking office, the vacancy shall be filled by the newly elected Council.


Replacement

and is proposed to be REPLACED as follows: Should any Council seat be unfilled for any reason, Council may, by a majority vote of the members present at a regularly scheduled meeting, fill said vacancy within 45 days of said vacancy being created. After 45 days have elapsed, if the vacancy is unfilled, the Mayor may appoint a qualified Elector of the City to fill said vacancy. Any appointments made under this Section shall be for the remainder of the vacant term.


CONS

Where as the City council of 7 members previously needed 4 votes or a majority of council members to select a new councilmen. The new rules would simply need the majority of members present at the next council meeting. In Addition if the vacancy leads to a tie of city council in the future then the Mayor would be able to select and Elector. The role of mayor is a position already selected by city council amongst the city council members. A Mayor could then select a Council Member that would vote then to continue their appointment as Mayor. Which in a dead locked council gives significant Authority to the Mayor.


Pros

Current City Council voted concurrently on many issues. Mayor Milligan and former Mayor Barhorst are absolutely brilliant in their roles as Mayor. A deadlocked City council can be detrimental to city operations. This would facilitate the City Council to operate even if there is a vacancy.


SECTION 2-6


Current

SECTION 2-6 RESTRICTION presently reads: Councilmen shall hold no other public office, except that of Mayor, Notary, member of the armed forces or director without pay of a public institution.


Replacement

Councilmembers shall hold no other public office, within Shelby County, or of any other office which the Ohio Attorney General and/or the Ohio Ethics Commission determines to be a conflict of interest, except that of Mayor, Notary, member of the armed forces or director without pay of a public institution


This Amendment to the City Charter most notably adds the requirement to the Ohio Attorney Generals Compatibility of Public offices.

  1. Is either of the positions a classified employment within the terms of R.C. 124.57

  2. Do the empowering statues of either position limit employment in another public position or the holding of another public office?

  3. Is one office subordinate to, or in any way a check upon, the other?

  4. Is it physically impossible for one person to discharge the duties of both positions?

  5. Is there a conflict of interest between the two positions?

  6. Are there local charter provisions, resolutions or ordinances that are controlling?

  7. Is there a federal, state or local departmental regulation applicable?




Section 1-3


Current

The City shall have all powers of local self-government and home rule, and all powers possible for a city to have under the Constitution of the State of Ohio. The City shall have all powers that now or hereafter may be granted to municipalities by the laws of the State of Ohio. All such powers shall be exercised in the manner prescribed in this Charter, or if not provided herein, in such manner as shall be provided by ordinance or resolution of the Council.


Replacement

The City shall have all powers of local self-government and home rule, and all powers possible for a city to have under the Constitution of the State of Ohio. The City shall have all powers that now or hereafter may be granted to municipalities by the laws of the State of Ohio. All such powers shall be exercised in the manner prescribed in this Charter, or if not provided herein, in such manner as shall be provided by ordinance or resolution of the Council.


  • A. All personal property of the City, including personal property grown or produced in City operations, and all real property and interests therein, which is not needed for public use and/or which has been otherwise determined surplus by the City manager, may be sold by the City pursuant to the terms below.


  • B. Opportunity for competition. If the City Manager determines the best interests of the City are served by competition as most likely to produce the best price, terms and conditions for the City, then the following options are available: 1. Open competitive bidding after at least one advertisements for bids which has been published in the newspaper with which the City had a contract for Public advertisement; or 2. Sealed bids as after advertisement as provided for in subsection (1); or 3. Oral or written bids from any source after failure of the property to sell by competitive bidding as provided in subsections (1) and (2)


  • C. Deeds and other documents of conveyance. Unless otherwise restricted, all deeds conveying real property or interests herein, as well as leases, bills of sale, purchase agreements, and other instruments of conveyance, shall be signed on behalf of the City by the City Manager or his/her authorized designee


  • D. Certain sales or property dispositions without competition authorized. In the event the City Manager determines that the cost of advertising certain property, either real or personal, is greater than the expected return, or in the case of personal property that the City Manager determines is essentially without value, then, upon his/her certification to Council of the same, waiving Subsection (B) above, said property can be disposed of upon such conditions as the City Manager deems best. The sale, exchange, or disposition of City owned real property or interest therein to the State or its subdivisions, or to the Federal government or its instrumentalities, or to the other public bodies or private corporations having the power of eminent domain, or to any corporation organized or qualified under R.C. Sections 1724 or 1728, or to any public or private body or corporation to which the general laws of the State authorize municipal corporations to sell property at private sale and without competition, or sales for urban renewal or economic development purposes, may be sold, exchanged, or disposed of, without opportunity for competition or other requirements except as may be provided by the Council in authorizing the sale, exchange, or disposition.

The City Manager in Conclusion

As Cities expand, and grow we start to notice areas of improvement within our laws and regulations. Every government must change as the world changes around us. In this instance, Council had been discussing for quite some time these changes and felt it was within their best interest to act now, and make necessary changes to clean up the Charter to work more efficiently. In one of those instances it involves amending the Charter to allow for language more closely related to other entities, for the sale of property, and/or real property. In this lightning fast real estate world, the City must be more nimble if it expects to stay competitive with other communities in the realm of economic development.


This proposed language change, allows the City to take appropriate action (buying/selling) in an expedited fashion to carry out the wishes of the City, rather than a lengthy process. Our goal in these changes is to cut through bureaucratic red-tape which slows down the function of government.


Other changes allow for council members to run and hold office, even if they have a job within government elsewhere. This means that if you work for the County, but live in Sidney, you can run for City Council. Currently, the Charter concludes that your cannot. Yet again a rule that needs updated and changed to better serve the people of our City. As everyone should be able to serve, and run for office. ~ Andrew Bowsher





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