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Why Does Monrovia Elect Its Mayor Separately?


I got to wondering about why Monrovia elects its mayor separately from the city council, since so many similar-size cities in the area just elect council members, who then elect the mayor among themselves. So I asked City Clerk Alice Atkins, who said the at-large mayor issue was on the city ballot in March 1976. She said it passed with just over 69% of the votes. Here is the voter guide argument that apparently persuaded Monrovians to adopt the change (no argument was filed against the measure):

The complexity of societal problems has forced citizens to re-evaluate their rules in the democratic process.

Today, more than ever, governmental decisions affect the daily lives of all of our citizens. In such an environment it becomes necessary for society to take steps to insure that their elected officials exert greater leadership and become responsive to the majority will. The Mayor, as the titular head of the community, is in the best position to reflect majority opinion, although the powers and general duties of an elected mayor and councilmen are the same, his responsibilities and opportunities for exerting leadership are greater by virtue of the position he occupies. In this light, many neighboring have gone to an elected mayoral system so that citizens may be able too insure that their Mayor has the necessary abilities, time, energy and leadership qualities for such an important office. Responsiveness is also mandated by the people, for the Mayor will have to answer to those who directly elected him.

Our present system, council selection of Mayor, does not adequately provide for Mayor responsiveness, nor does it insure us that such an important position will be filled by a person possessing all of the desirable qualities. Without proper democratic controls, citizens cannot be certain that a council selected Mayor will truly represent the wishes of the people.

The election of Mayor will not cause a change in our present council manager form of government, but it will provide our citizens with a meaningful choice and not leave such an important selection open to chance. An elected Mayor will become directly responsive and responsible to the people. Only by this method can we be certain to gain the community leadership needed in a complex society.

VOTE YES

R.L. DICK MOUNTJOY


- Brad Haugaard

1 comment:

  1. STAY OUT OF MONROVIA !!!
    WE HAVE ENOUGH TROUBLE
    WHO NEEDS A SHADEY GUY LIKE YOU
    WE HAVE ENOUGH OF THEM ALREADY

    ReplyDelete