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Kudos to city councilor Scott Singer, for introducing ordinance 5347 that will “…amend the method for filling vacancies on the City Council, including the office of mayor…”
Currently, should a city council seat become vacated, remaining members of the council appoint the person who would finish the vacated term. Additionally, should the mayor’s seat become vacated, the person named as Deputy Mayor (by the sitting councilors, not by the electorate) is automatically installed in the mayor’s seat. This effectively leaves citizens out of the process of choosing the leaders who represent them.
Ordinance 5347 provides that “…vacancies shall be filled by special election…”, which would have the effect of returning electoral powers to the citizens of Boca Raton and enhancing their ability to choose their leaders by ballot, rather than by political appointment.
It is worth noting that this electoral power could be particularly important in 2018, when two high profile political positions become available. State Representative Bill Hager is term limited in 2018, as well as county Commissioner Steven Abrams. It is widely speculated that one, or even two, of our city councilors or mayor might resign their council positions in order to run for these higher offices. If so, then 5347 should be here just in time to ensure that citizens will have a chance to choose successors to the vacated positions.
So, what happens next?
First, contact your current city councilors who must first vote to approve ordinance 5347. Hopefully, our council will recognize this common sense, citizen friendly, approach to filling vacancies and will vote “yes” unanimously. [Email addresses below]
Next, 5347 requires a change to the city charter which, in turn, requires a majority vote of the citizens of Boca Raton. This change to the charter is proposed to appear in a special election to be held on August 30, 2016.
Please vote “yes” for this common sense change to our city charter. In 2018, you may be glad you did so.
Thank you Councilor Singer!
Joe Panella – Candidate for City Council, March 2017
City Council Contact Info
Mayor Susan Haynie – email@example.com
Councilman Robert Weinroth – firstname.lastname@example.org
Deputy Mayor Mike Mullaugh – email@example.com
CRA Chair,Councilman Scott Singer – firstname.lastname@example.org
Jeremy Rodgers – email@example.com