ELECTION PREVIEW: Altus voters preparing to decide 23 separate propositions

ELECTION PREVIEW: Altus voters preparing to decide 23 separate propositions
Voters in Altus will be heading to the polls next week to vote on nearly two dozens changes to the Altus City Charter. (Source: KSWO)

ALTUS, Okla. (TNN) - Voters in Altus will be heading to the polls next week to vote on nearly two dozens changes to the Altus City Charter.

Those potential changes were decided upon by an elected board of freeholders. The freeholders met several times, going through the charter section by section and determining if any changes needed to be made.

Ultimately, they decided on 23 potential changes that voters will have the final say on next week.

Those propositions include the following list:

  • Shall the Altus City Charter be amended at Article 1, Section 2 to be known as the charter form of government rather than the council-manager form of government.
  • Shall the Altus City Charter be amended at Article 2, Section 3 to operate to remove a council member once he ceases to be a resident of the ward he was elected to serve.
  • Shall the Altus City Charter be amended at Article 2, Section 6 to limit reimbursement of council members and the mayor only to justified expenses incurred for travel outside the city limits in the amount of $200 for a council member and $400 for the mayor.
  • Shall the Altus City Charter be amended at Article 2, Section 7 to require Council to inquire into matters of criminal, financial or personnel abuse, or hostile work environments and to approve reimbursements of expenses incurred for city businesses by the Council, City manager and elected officers of the City and to prepare and approve a detailed city government organization chart and review the chart annually and to determine compensation rates for employees assigned additional duties and to adopt a code of ethics to govern interactions between council members and Council and the public.
  • Shall Article 2, Section 8 of the Altus City Charter be amended as follows: (a) changing the title to Council/Employee relations, (b) prohibiting Council from directing, requesting or participating in the appointment or removal of any person from his employment or requesting the same from the City Manager or an elected official, (c) permitting Council to inquire into criminal, financial, or personnel abuse or hostile work environment in city government, (d) requiring Council to deal with the administrative service and ordinary administrative matters through the City Manager or elected officer.
  • Shall Article 2, Section 10 of the Altus City Charter be amended as follows: (a) requiring a candidate for Police Chief to possess 10 years as a full-time sworn law enforcement officer, (b) requiring that the Police Chief meet the qualifications of Title 11 O.S. Section 350102 (B-E) and providing for removal if such qualifications are not met, (c) requiring City Council to review Police Chief salary no less than 3 months prior to the election for the position, but any changes will not be effective during a current term, (d) requiring the Police Chief to prepare and present an annual departmental budget and agenda items for Council, € making the Police Chief a member of an agenda committee that consolidates proposed agendas for Council.
  • Shall Article 2, Section 11 of the Altus City Charter be amended as follows: (a) requiring City Council to review City Clerk-Treasurer salary no less than 3 months prior to the election for the position, but any changes will not be effective during a current term, (b) requiring the City Clerk-Treasurer to prepare and present an annual departmental budge and agenda items for Council, (c) making the City Clerk-Treasurer a member of an agenda committee that consolidates proposed agendas for Council.
  • Shall Article 2, Section 12 of the Altus City Charter be amended as follows: (a) requiring City Council to review Street Commissioner salary no less than 3 months prior to the election for the position, but any changes will not be effective during a current term, (b) requiring the Street Commissioner to prepare and present an annual department budget and agenda items for Council, (c) making the Street Commissioner a member of an agenda committee that consolidates proposed agendas for Council.
  • Shall Article 2 of the Altus City Charter be amended by adding Section 22 which creates a budget committee consisting of the City Manager, Chief of Police, City Clerk-Treasurer, Street Commissioner, Chief Financial Officer and City Attorney and which shall present a consolidated budget to the City Council for approval.
  • Shall Article 2 of the Altus City Charter be amended by adding Section 23 requiring all persons of the City, elected or appointed, who have the responsibility of hiring, terminating, promoting, demoting, or disciplining City employees to comply with state and federal law, and the Charter and City ordinances, in the hiring, termination and disciplinary process.
  • Shall Article 2 of the Altus City Charter be amended by adding Section 24 granting each elected city official the right to present, and to be heard, regarding his/her respective proposed budget and perceived departmental needs, annually to Council and requiring that such presentation and hearing could occur before the time of formulating the annual, municipal budget and allowing Council to prescribe the rules and procedure for the presentation and hearing.
  • Shall Article 3, Section 1 of the Altus City Charter be amended by removing the residency requirement for the City Manager and allowing Council to set a mileage limit as to the residency of the City Manager, as well as allowing a grace period for relocation.
  • Shall Article 3, Section 3 of the Altus City Charter be amended by requiring the City Manager: (a) to work in partnership with the elected officials about personnel matters in the elected officials’ department, (b) prepare a personnel and fiscal budget for the departments administered by the City Manager, and (c) be a member of the agenda committee along with the Chief of Police, City Clerk – Treasurer, Street Commissioner, City Manager, and City Attorney, which committee shall consolidate proposed agendas and combined agendas in accordance with state statutes for presentation to Council.
  • Shall Article 3, Section 4 of the Altus City Charter be amended by allowing the City Council to establish the residency requirements for the City Attorney and clarifying that the City Attorney is the legal advisor to department administrators and the elected officials.
  • Shall Article 4, Section 1 of the Altus City Charter be amended by: (a) changing the captioned title to City Clerk-Treasurer and all references in the text of this article and section from Clerk Treasurer to City Clerk – Treasurer.
  • Shall Article 6, Section 2 of the Altus City Charter be amended to require candidates for elected city offices to file a declaration of candidacy with the county election board for their respective wards.
  • Shall Article 6, Section 4 of the Altus City Charter be amended to require that primary election dates shall be held every odd-numbered year on the Second Tuesday in February.
  • Shall Article 6, Section 5 of the Altus City Charter be amended to provide that if more than two candidates file for an elective office the two (2) candidates for each elective office receiving the greatest number of votes cast in the primary election shall proceed to the general election.
  • Shall Article 6, Section 6 of the Altus City Charter be amended to provide that a general election shall be held on the First Tuesday in April in every odd-numbered year to elect successors for those offices in terms of which are expiring.
  • Shall Article 7, Section 2 of the Altus City Charter be amended to change the time periods in the article and section from 10 days to 10 business days and providing that the Merit System Board shall be the final arbiter between the City Manager and elected officials as to employment disputes and providing for time periods for hearing any such dispute.
  • Shall Article 7, Section 4 of the Altus City Charter be amended by striking the scrivener’s error of (he) from the text.
  • Shall Article 7, Section 12 of the Altus City Charter be amended by striking the scrivener’s error of Separability and replacing the word with Severability.
  • Shall Article 7, Section 13 of the Altus City Charter be amended by adding elected officials to the specified list of people that must avoid conflicts of interests in selling or bartering anything to the City of Altus and subjecting elected officials to forfeiture of office in the event of a conflict of interest.

Early voting begins on Thursday and all polls will be open on Tuesday, June 30.

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