The residents of Springfield voted to establish a Charter Study Commission. The five elected commissioners held an organizational meeting on December 10th. At that meetiing a Chairman was selected (former Mayor Hugh Keffer) and the hours/place of meetings were decided. During the next eight months the Commission will accomplish the following:Study the present form of government by interviewing present and past public officials, civic leaders, and media representatives.
- Hold public meetings to inform voters of other forms of government which are available, and to gather opinions on other forms.
- Study alternative forms of government by reviewing statutory provisions of other forms, interviewing persons having experience with other forms.
- Make a decision by discussing advantages and disadvantages of each alternative form of government in relation to the present form.
- Prepare the Charter Study Commission Report
The Commission can recommend one of the following: 1. the current form of government be retained and unchanged; 2. the current form of government be retained, but with certain modifications;3. the form of government be changed to one of the four plans under the Faulkner Act; 4. the governing body petition the Legislature for either a special charter or one or more specific amendments to the municipality’s charter, such as the addition of initiative, referendum and recall to one of the “traditional” forms of municipal government (e.g., a borough or township form).
There are four forms of government under the Faulkner Act:
- The Mayor-Council Plan
- The Council – Manager Plan
- The Small Municipal Plan
- The Mayor-Council – Administrator Plan
If the Charter Study Commission recommends adoption of one of the Faulkner Act forms, then a Referendum on the optional plan will be placed on the November 2013 ballot.
The January 2013 meetings are scheduled for 7:30 PM on January 7, 14, and 21 at the Springfield Library.