Cover, April 26: “Life with Less Water”
The real problem
Increased water demand that is out of line with what this landscape can provide is the real problem.
Kevin John, Santa Fe
News, May 10: “Charter Tour”
Model advises opposite
The League of Women Voters of Santa Fe County has been examining the recommendations of the current Charter Review Commission. We are concerned that there has been little public participation in the activities of the commission, and we wish this body had made more efforts to solicit public observation and input. We encourage the city’s residents to review the recommendations and submit comments as the proposed changes make their way through the Governing Body’s committee review and public hearing process.
The League does not support or oppose any of these recommendations; however, we find it interesting that the commentary portion of the commission’s section on governance relies greatly on the Model City Charter…published by the National Civic League. Two of the commission’s recommendations are specifically opposed by this model charter: one removes the mayor as a full member of the governing body, giving him/her a vote only to break a tie; the other gives her/him veto power.
In fact, the model charter advises the opposite, “Communities should avoid granting special voting status to the mayor (e.g., vote on council only to make or break a tie). Such power will likely impede rather than enhance the mayor’s capacity to lead. Similarly, giving the mayor veto power in a council-manager city cannot help but confuse his or her role with that of the executive mayor in a mayor-council city.”
Jody Larson, Co-Chair, Action and Advocacy Committee, League of Women Voters of Santa Fe County