The Leon County Citizen Charter Review Committee (CCRC) met on Thursday, November 16th, for the second time and began advancing ideas about possible amendments to the county charter.
Under the CCRC process, ideas proposed by any of the 14 committee members that receive four votes of support are submitted to county staff for more analysis and returned to the CCRC for further consideration.
Not surprisingly, proposed amendments addressing the Community Redevelopment Agency (CRA), ethics and consolidation – issues which have all have been in the local news recently – were put up for consideration by several members.
Gordon Thames, a local developer of apartment communities, proposed that CRA investments of public monies be limited to public infrastructure and that the CRA operate under a competitive procurement process.
Thames argued that the current CRA process acts like a bank for some developers and the approach is not consistent with the original intent of the governmental entities.
Thames acknowledged his idea would set a higher standard for CRA’s than what is currently in state law.
The idea moved forward with a unanimous vote.
Another idea that moved forward with unanimous support was Neil Fleckenstein’s proposal of placing the county’s code of ethics in the charter.
An idea addressing consolidation failed to move forward.
Other ideas that received support and will come back to the CCRC after analysis, included the possibility of making some elected positions appointed, changing the school superintendent election to non-partisan, changing the current maximum campaign donation of $250 to a higher level, adding an at-large county commissioner, and changing the way district county commissioners are elected.
The CCRC has three more meetings before the end of the year and will continue to consider possible amendments put forth by committee members.
The next meeting is scheduled for November 30, 2017 at 11:30. All meetings are held in the Leon County Commissioner Chambers 5th Floor Leon County Courthouse, 301 South Monroe Street.
The county charter is a local “home rule constitution” approved by the local electorate, which specifies the structure, organization, and authority of county government.
The Board of County Commissioners is required by the Charter to appoint a CCRC every eight years, 12 months prior to the general election.
The Citizen Charter Review Committee is charged with reviewing the County’s Home Rule Charter and proposing any amendments or revisions for consideration by the Board for placement on the 2018 general election ballot.