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February 10, 2013

Charter recommendations to go before council

GREENVILLE — A panel of local residents have compiled a list of recommended changes to the City of Greenville’s governing document.

The Citizens Charter Review Committee wrapped up its review of the Charter last week and intends to present its findings to the City Council during Tuesday’s regular session, starting at 6 p.m. in the Municipal Building, 2821 Washington Street. A work session is also set for 5 p.m. Tuesday.

Many of the committee’s recommendations involve minor changes in language included in the current Charter, such as indicating “Municipal Judge” where the Charter now says “City Judge.”

There are a few more significant changes the panel has suggested, including to the process under which the Greenville City Manager can be removed from his position.

The committee began meeting January 16, to conduct a review of the document which regulates how the City of Greenville operates.

The Council will now have to decide which recommended changes, if any, to the Charter to place before local voters as part of the May 11 municipal election ballot.

The Charter is the document which contains the rules and regulations governing how the Council, the city administration and related agencies do business.

State law allows the charter to be amended every two years and to also reflect changes in state law if needed.

The last Charter review resulted in an election in May 2010 during which Greenville’s registered voters passed all 13 proposed amendments on the ballot.

A complete copy of the current Charter is available on the City of Greenville Web site at www.ci.greenville.tx.us.

The Council voted in April of last year to amend the employment agreement of City Manager Steven Alexander to where it will take five members of the Council, rather than four, to terminate the contract.

The committee has recommended changing the Charter to provide that the City Manager may be removed from his or her individual position upon a majority vote (four members) of the City Council.

The committee has also recommended changing the Charter to waive the residency requirements in increments of 90 days when it is necessary to replace any City of Greenville official, to allow for the appointment of an interim official who may not meet the residency requirements at time of appointment.

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