Tuesday, September 02, 2014

Middletown Charter Revisions: Public Hearing to Night & What You Should Know!

The Common Council will vote tonight on revisions to Middletown's Charter. The public is encouraged to speak at the public hearing tonight at 7 pm at City Hall. The Charter Revision Commission, after a series of public meetings, narrowed down 29 possible changes, to 14 changes to the existing Charter. The draft report can be read here: The final report can be read here:
Bottom line folks, its your money, its your right to know & to decide how its spent! NOW is the time to speak up!

In the final report items to be voted on this evening are:

 1.Mayor’s Term to 4 years

 2.Council’s Term to 4 years

 3.Removing Sheriffs from City Officials

 4..Changing the name of City Attorney to General Counsel

 5 .Changing the name of Mayor’s Administrative Assistant to Chief of Staff

6. Permanent Vacancy in the Office of the Mayor to account for a four-year term

 7.Four year terms for the elected officials of Board of Assessment Appeals and Registrars
of Voters.

 8.Maintaining staggered terms of Board of Education and Planning and Zoning
 Amending Biennial Election where appropriate

 9.Amending the Board of Tax Review name to Board of Assessment Appeals

 10 .Adding language for the odd-year elections to reduce Municipal Polling places as stated

The Council asked the Charter Revision Commission to reconsider the following items:

1. Leave the Treasurer as an elected position with no changes to Chapter II, Section 2 and
Chapter IV, Section 4.

 2.Mayor’s Compensation to start at $100,000 and remove all language regarding CPI and
tax shelter annuity of $15,000 with language that the Council will have the responsibility
to budget salary increases annually, Chapter VI, Section 1.

 3.Council’s stipend to start at $8,400 and remove all language regarding CPI with
language that the Council will have the responsibility to budget salary increases
annually, Chapter III, Section 1 and Chapter III, Section 4.

 4.Leave Chapter III, Section 7B, the way it is except top change the title City Attorney to
General Counsel.

 5.Authority of the Common Council to set salaries and stipends for elected officials to
remain the same, with wording to effect the changes of 3 and 5.

 6.Reconsider Chapter VIII, Section 1 Planning and Zoning to reduce the affirmative votes
needed to reflect the State Statute of requiring a simple majority of affirmative votes.

The Council choose to place the first two items as referendum items for the public to decide.
Tonight, the wording of referendum items is up for a vote:

“Shall the Charter be amended to provide for a term of four years for the following elected officials of the City of Middletown: the Mayor, Common Council, Treasurer, Board of Assessment Appeals and Registrars of Voters?

“Shall the Charter be amended to raise the bond limit for which the Common Council can approve spending without going to referendum to $1,000,000?

“Shall all other amendments to the Charter as stated in the Final Report of the Charter Revision Commission and adopted by the Council at its September 2, 2014 meeting be approved?

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