Charter Review Committee
November 4, 2004
Regular Meeting Minutes
Council Chambers, 1175 East Main Street
I. CALL TO ORDER: Chair John Enders called the Ashland Charter Review Committee meeting to order at 7:02 p.m. on November 4, 2004 in the Civic Center Council Chambers, 1175 E Main Street, Ashland, Oregon.
Members Present: Roy Bashaw, Hal Cloer, Kate Culbertson, John Enders, Laurie MacGraw, Pam Marsh, Keith Massie, Donald Montgomery, Michael Riedeman and Carole Wheeldon
Member Absent: None
Staff Present: Ann Seltzer, Management Analyst, Staff Liaison
Nancy Slocum, Clerk
MacGraw / Montgomery m/s to approve the minutes of the October 21, 2004 as submitted. Motion passed unanimously.
II. PUBLIC FORUM No one spoke.
III. REVIEW MATERIALS FROM TOM SPONSLER
Seltzer presented Sponsler's highlighted version of the current city charter and an initial Ashland-focused draft of 2004 League of Oregon City Model Charter. Sponsler used the same methodology as Paul Nolte. Seltzer reported that Sponsler's contract is signed and anything beyond the scope of work will be charged at $180 per hour.
Wheeldon thanked City Attorney Mike Franell for his League of Oregon City's draft charter. Massie volunteered to go through both highlighted versions and list both where they agree and where they disagree.
IV. DISCUSSION OF THE PUBLIC INVOLVEMENT PROCESS
The Public Involvement Subcommittee (Wheeldon, Montgomery and Marsh) met November 2nd. The Public Forum is tentatively scheduled for January 20, 2005 subject to the availability of the Rogue River Room at Southern Oregon University. Format will include eight or nine issue-focused stations and a brief presentation. A volunteer or speech or debate student will record ideas. The ideas will be synthesized and brought back to the Committee for discussion. There may be a second forum in early April for any unresolved issues. Seltzer will coordinate publicity.
Wheeldon contacted the list of service groups. Some groups were not appropriate as they included non-Ashland citizens. The goal is for volunteer committee members to make a short presentation to these groups' at their December or January meetings.
Marsh reminded Committee members that white papers and committee discussion must be completed before the first forum. Wheeldon asked the Committee to email her additional suggestions.
Enders thanked the subcommittee and announced that he is scheduled to present a status report at the November 16th City Council meeting with another briefing scheduled for February 17th. He invited any and all members to accompany him during his short presentation. Cloer suggested giving the City Council an example of a provision that may become a future ordinance.
Montgomery thought it beneficial to draft the ballot measures and gauge public response. Wheeldon suggested forming a "focus group." She said some controversial provisions might have to be voted on separately. MacGraw wondered about the repercussions of this. Massie thought a survey might be helpful. Enders thought one on the main goals of the Committee was consensus to build public confidence.
V. DISCUSSION OF SUB-COMMITTEE REPORTS
Enders explained the definition and purpose of the white paper as an analytical tool, a neutrally look at pros and cons of the issues to facilitate a substance discussion. Subcommittee lead will circulate a draft to the other subcommittee members, then to the committee as a whole. Wheeldon asked that by November 18 the subcommittees draft and email white papers to all committee members so that by December 4th or 18th the full committee can begin discussions. Seltzer volunteered to email committee members a sample. Bashaw suggested the white papers be limited to one to two pages. The committee reassigned some issues.
Marsh asked the committee to explain why the study of a separate police and fire departments was controversial. Bashaw explained, from his experience, it was a politically sensitive labor negotiation issue. The committee decided that a topic requested from any member was appropriate for a white paper.
VI. ACTION ITEMS/RECAP/ITEMS FROM COMMITTEE MEMBERS
Cloer reported that the employee recruitment specialist for the City Administer position said applicants shied away from applying because of the structure of the existing charter.
Enders suggested Alan DeBoer as a possible speaker for the next meeting.
Seltzer suggested that future documents be emailed in a pdf format to prevent printing problems. Marsh suggested color documents be available at the meeting.
Wheeldon commended Cloer for soliciting public input and asked committee to do the same. MacGraw suggested the committee keep a "log" of expert testimony and opinions.
Marsh suggested that subcommittees attach a list of references to their white papers to provide a history of their efforts.
The meeting was adjourned at 8:43 p.m.