Letter to the Editor: Westlake amendments vote deserves careful consideration

To the editor:

Every 10 years our Westlake Charter requires the appointment, by the Mayor and City Council, of a committee of nine residents to review the charter. The committee then makes recommendations to council for additions and/or changes to be put on the ballot for the consideration of all voters in the following year.

Our 2009 Review Committee took its responsibility very seriously, making sure it heard from anyone who had anything to bring before us. After much consideration, discussion and deliberation, we recommended 12 charter amendments to council. Council considered these; rejecting some, adding some and changing others. That is its right to do, although in my mind it at least violates the spirit of our charter – that residents recommend changes to fellow residents.

I would not presume to tell you how to vote, however I do feel you need to know the ballot amendments, for the most part, do not represent the work of our committee. A close reading of each amendment will leave no doubt that it is the work of council for the benefit of council – at the risk of losing the balance of authority in Westlake that has served our city so well.

Ask yourself, as you prepare to vote on each amendment: “Does this help our city or does it help those on council?” And then vote accordingly. This is now the only way we, as citizens of Westlake, can be heard.

Mel Maurer
Chairman, 2009 Westlake Charter Review Committee

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Volume 2, Issue 21, Posted 10:09 AM, 10.15.2010