Eudora News and Information – www.eudorareporter.com
The November election ballot got a bit longer on Monday night. The Eudora City Council passed a measure to ask the voters of Eudora to change the form of Government for the City of Eudora from a Mayor/Council form of government to a Commission/City Manager form of government.
The idea to change the form of government came about in December 2010 when the City of Eudora moved from a City of the Third Class to a City of the Second Class. By state statute, cities of the Second Class are to have a Commission based form of government. Cities of the Third Class, which Eudora was prior to the elevation in designation, have a Mayor/Council form of government.
“This is the best time to make a move like this,” Councilwoman Ruth Hughs said. “There is no point in having someone run for Mayor and then have the position eliminated a short time down the road.
Hughs also wants people to know the mayor is not being ousted or that it is some attempt to get rid of him.
“Our mayor is actively behind the idea to moving to this form of government,” Hughs said.
The duties of the mayor’s position, for the last few years, has been to preside over Council meetings and other ceremonial activities such as proclamations and ribbon cutter. The Mayor has no vote at City Council meetings unless there is a tie vote. That instance has happened only once in the last two years.
The interesting part of this change is that, by law, the City Commission would then automatically be reset to a three member panel. The City Council has already said that they plan on offering a charter ordinance if the motion does pass, that will take it from three members back to its current five members. An additional charter ordinance would keep the terms staggered and allow current members who were elected in 2011 to finish out their current term. The current Council members who were elected in 2011 include Ruth Hughs, Kenny Massey and John Fiore. The Council positions currently held by Bill Whitten and Tim Reazin would be up for election. How the person who would be named “Mayor” has yet to be determined.
The other interesting fact is the 2013 City Council election. Councilman Bill Whitten has stated on the record to Eudorareporter.com that he does not plan on running for his seat. Councilman Reazin has said he is undecided at this time. Would one of the winner’s of that election be named Mayor or would it come from one of the returning members?
Time will tell and the people of Eudora get to decide the issue first at the ballot box.