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Local News

July 2, 2014

Commission seeks public's feedback for charter review

The Oneonta City Charter, adopted by voters in 2011, is under review, and its authors want to hear comments from the public tonight.

The Charter Review Commission will hold a special meeting for public input in Common Council Chambers at City Hall, 258 Main Street, at 6:30 p.m.

The Charter Review Commission was created by Common Council on April 15 to review the operation of the new charter.

The meeting tonight will allow the commission to hear any concerns of city residents about how the charter is being implemented, a media release said, and the commission will welcome comments and suggestions for change.

A city charter details how city government is organized and is to function.

In 2011, after two years of work, the Charter Revision Commission proposed the creation of a full-time city manager to oversee the daily administration of city government, thereby freeing the Common Council and the mayor to focus on policy, according to commission members.

In April, Oneonta Mayor Dick Miller said a review of the Oneonta City Charter and its implementation seemed timely with the departure of the first city manager and more than two years of governance under the revised document.

The city is conducting a search for another city manager.

Laurie Zimniewicz, chairwoman of the Charter Review Commission, said commissioners have spent a month interviewing council members, the mayor and the former city manager to collect data, and tonight is time to hear comments from the community.

“We’re very much looking forward to hearing what the residents of Oneonta have to say,” Zimniewicz said Tuesday. “This is an opportunity for the public to tell us what they see is going on.”

Zimniewicz said the review team is the same group that wrote the revised charter, except for two members who weren’t available. Kathy Wolverton, city personnel director, is the liaison with the city, Zimniewicz said.

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