Wednesday, April 8, 2015

To the Charter Review Committee


Given the recent event concerning the mayor, certain sections of the city charter should be brought up for review again dealing with the election of the mayor, how to fill empty seat and recall.

It has come to my attention that it is not uncommon for a person to run for reelection and then resign immediately after the election or refuse to take a seat won through the election. Typically, this would result in the board or council selecting a new member.

Richardson voters passed the direction election amendment by a 3 to 1 margin. It was clear the voters wanted to have a direct say in who the mayor would be.

 Before the filing deadline, there were promises and statement made that the current mayor would not run for reelection. She finally did file on the last day of the filing period, at a late hour. Then her story changed to she would not accept being sworn in. She has in effect resign for a term she is not even elected to yet. This tracks with how it appears other election are manipulated.

Perhaps it would be best and should be considered that if any seats open, there should be a special election.

The suggestion that recall be limited to only specific time periods should also be removed. There is a high enough bar already, 10% of the voters, to prevent needless actions. Creating these times periods only adds protection to the council members, it does not expand the rights of the citizens, it erodes the rights of the citizen. That is not the purpose of a city Charter.

While I think most of you probably have good intention concerning reviewing the charter, as it has been executed, it is very poor.

The almost total lack of public involvement is one of the worst actions concerning this charter review. While some of you may have wanted more public involvement, this disregard for the public was largely ignored. It was your choice, as a group, how these meeting would proceed.

The city attorney in, effect leading the meeting, was another design failure. He works to protect the city and the council members. It is his job to do their bidding. There is a clear bias against the public with this action. It may not have been clear to each of you when this process began, but it should be clear to you all with the current hindsight.

By all appearances, the charter commission has never been conducted with the citizens as the priority. The priority has been skewed to the city council and city administrations wants and desires. It woulod be hard to deny that.

Given current events, and the view of hindsight, I would hope that you all consider carefully how this charter review process has been done. I would hope that you all can see my points and would agree it needs to start over with the focus being on balance view of both the city administrator’s needs and views to protect the citizens and allow them to have input at all future meetings.


  1. Have we seen her formal letter of resignation? Has it been accepted by the City? (of course not).

    Is it possible that we'll see another Slagel two-step "I said I was going to resign but I decided the City needed me too much!" (I know that's not his exact statement but ....)

    She's elected, she changes her mind and decides to serve AND work at Sooner ... what's to stop her?

  2. It could happen again. Here was Slegel's resignation speech.