Weakening the mayor

The proposed changes to our city charter are more sweeping than we are being told.

We already have a weak mayor form of government.  The mayor cannot vote on items except in the case of a tie.  On week-to-week items that makes the mayor less important than the city representatives.

One of the few powers that the mayor has left is when dealing with the city attorney.  The mayor appoints and terminates a city attorney as long as he has the votes of the majority of city council.

Proposed amendment number six would make the council responsible for the appointment and termination of the city attorney (without the mayor’s involvement) and the mayor would not be able to veto the termination of the city attorney.

We deserve better


9 Responses to Weakening the mayor

  1. Charter Committee Member says:

    The Charter Committee talked about giving the mayor a vote on Council. The consensus was that the Mayor should not vote like a council member but take a leadership position with Council. He should be able to make his position known thru his leadership. It would be difficult to give the mayor a vote and also retain his veto power.


    • Jerry Kurtyka says:

      That kind of leadership and $1.75 will buy you a tall Pike at Starbucks. No real power, no leadership.


    • anonymous says:

      The fact that the charter committee included the most recent city manager and the former mayor, who was responsible creating the city manager position, makes the committee suspect. The deck was stacked, the well was poisoned, as has been the case with so many things done by the city council for the past 10 years. Leeser and Niland could have picked their charter committee nominees from any number of good, solid citizens, but they chose two members of the insiders club. That’s just another example of why there is distrust and a lack of faith in local government. Appointed positions of influence are reserved for a select few, who pop up like gophers on multiple boards and committees, not because others are unwilling to serve, but because a few people want to control things.


  2. Charter Committee Member says:

    There is NO CHANGE to the Charter regarding the mayor’s powers over the City Manager. That is the way the Charter was written when the change was made to a City Manager form of Government.

    The change in the Charter pertains to the City Attorney. The City Attorney will now be appointed by the Council and Mayor. That is the way it should be and was an oversight when the Charter was revised to include a City Manager.


    • Brutus says:

      From the ordinance:

      Should Sections 3.7 A, 3.5 E and 4.1 B of the City Charter, relating to the appointment and removal of the City Attorney, be amended to provide that the City Attorney is appointed by the City Council solely on the basis of legal experience and qualifications; may be removed by resolution approved by a majority of City Council; and provide that the Mayor shall not have any veto power over City Council for actions which remove the City Attorney?

      The mayor does not vote unless there is a tie. This would remove the mayor’s power of appointment.

      The mayor would no longer be able to veto the firing of the city attorney.



  3. Might as well fire the mayor and have the cm do his job and answer to council. Majority rules anyway.

    Have the chamber do the recruitment of business.


  4. anonymous says:

    This is part of an overall effort to more strongly and absolutely establish city council reps as power brokers and further diminish the already limited power of the mayor.


  5. One more time, let me ask you: Why do we not have a strong mayor form of government? Or, better yet, why don’t we, the citizens and taxpayers of El Paso, get to voice our opinions about this by voting on the issue?


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