There are 16 amendments to Raymore’s city charter on the ballot Nov. 7 for voters to consider.
As mandated in the charter itself, the city of Raymore is required to review the document every 10 years. A nine-member charter review commission, consisting of aldermen and citizens, started meeting in September 2016 to conduct an in-depth review of each section.
A city spokesman pointed to a report compiled and published on the city’s website to help residents understand the proposed amendments to the city’s charter.
Many of the questions, as listed on the ballot, call for current charter language to be clarified or to bring it line with state law, though voters also will be asked to consider a few new requirements.
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The ballot questions include a wide variety of proposed changes — including a change to definitions for consistency; issues regarding city council qualifications, compensation, leadership, and vacancies of office; the process for discharging the city attorney and city prosecutor; operational amendments for legislative proceedings; changes to executive powers; new rules for the appointment and term of the city manager; new rules for nominations and municipal elections; new mechanisms for initiative, referendum, and recall petitions; and an amendment to general provisions related to charter amendments.
Some of the most notable suggestions comes from Question No. 4, where the city asks voters to consider six sub-items in the charter addressing the city council and the mayor.
If passed, Question No. 4 would require the city council to discuss compensation of the mayor and council members at least once a year during a work session.
Within the section of the charter concerning the mayor’s pay and council members’ pay, the commission also suggested adding a paragraph clarifying the start and end dates of compensation.
Also if passed, Question No. 4 would require a council member or the mayor to give up their seat if they violate the terms of provisions of the city’s Code of Conduct for Elected Officials.
The question also takes attendance of city council meetings and work sessions into consideration.
According to the ballot language, the mayor or council members would be required to forfeit office if they miss more than 25 percent of the council’s regular meetings or work sessions during any 12-month period without being excused by the council.
To view the charter review commission’s full report on its recommendations, visit www.raymore.com/charter.
What’s on the ballot?
On Nov. 7, Raymore voters will consider 16 questions amending parts of the city charter. The questions, as shown on the ballot, are listed:
Question 1: Shall the Charter of the City of Raymore be amended to clarify terminology regarding the voting requirements for a “vote of the Council” (meaning a vote of a majority of a quorum) and a “vote of the entire Council” (meaning the vote of a majority of all eight (8) Councilmembers)?
Question 2: Shall the Charter of the City of Raymore be amended to clarify the ability of the City Council to rehire a former Municipal Judge for a new term as Municipal Judge in spite of the prohibition for other types of municipal employment?
Question 3: Shall the Charter of the City of Raymore be amended to clarify the ability of a former City Prosecutor to run for the office of Mayor or a City Council seat within one (1) year from the discontinuation of their employment term with the City or be re-hired as the City Prosecutor for a new term?
Question 4: Shall the Charter of the City of Raymore, Article III, City Council and Article IV, Mayor, be amended in various sections to: (a) Require that the Mayor and City Council members be citizens of the United States, not subject to City liens or forfeitures, and compliant with all statutory requirements for service as an elected official, and (b) Require that the compensation of the Mayor and Councilmembers be placed on a Council work session agenda for discussion at least annually, and (c) Identify the commencement of compensation for Mayor and Councilmembers upon the administration of their oath of office and the termination of compensation at their resignation, removal or the expiration of their term, prorated by day for the month, and (d) Require that the Council declare the office of the Mayor to be vacant following a forfeiture of office, and (e) Requiring the forfeiture of office by the Mayor or Councilmembers who miss more than twenty-five percent (25%) of the Council’s regular meetings or work sessions during any twelve (12) month period without being excused by the Council, and (f) Requiring the forfeiture of office of the Mayor or Councilmembers who violate the terms and provisions of the Code of Conduct for Elected Officials as adopted by the Raymore City Code?
Question 5: Shall the Charter of the City of Raymore, Article Ill, City Council, Section 3.4 be amended as regards the duties of the Mayor Pro Tempore during (1) the temporary physical absence in person or disability of the Mayor, or (2) in the event the Mayoral seat is declared vacant, to authorize the Mayor Pro Tempore to break a tie vote of the Council, and authorize the Mayor Pro Tempore to veto ordinances and resolutions?
Question 6: Shall the Charter for the City of Raymore, Article III, City Council, be amended in various sections to allow for removal of the City Attorney and the City Prosecuting Attorney with the consent of five (5) out of the eight (8) members of the entire Council?
Question 7: Shall the Charter of the City of Raymore, Article Ill, City Council, Section 3.13 be amended to clarify the procedure for adoption of ordinances requiring that they be read by title in two (2) separate, open Council meetings before passage unless declared an emergency?
Question 8: Shall the Charter of the City of Raymore, Article Ill, City Council, Section 3.13(h) and Article IV, Mayor, Section 4.4(c) be amended to change the time limit for the Mayor to veto any adopted ordinance and resolution from fourteen (14) days to ten (10) days?
Question 9: Shall the Charter of the City of Raymore, Article IV, Mayor, Section 4.1 be amended to remove the reference to military law?
Question 10: Shall the Charter of the City of Raymore, Section 1.2 and Article IV, Mayor, Section 4.4 be amended to authorize the Mayor to a break a tie vote of the Council in all circumstances?
Question 11: Shall the Charter of the City of Raymore, Article V, City Manager Section 5.1 be amended to remove the indefinite term of the City Manager?
Question 12: Shall the Charter of the City of Raymore, Article IX, Nominations and Elections, Section 9.3 be amended so that the term and compensation for an elected municipal official shall begin upon their reciting the oath of office following the declaration of election results by the Council?
Question 13: Shall the Charter of the City of Raymore, Article IX, Nominations and Elections, Section 9.4 be amended so that Councilmembers displaced following the realignment of ward boundaries shall be allowed to serve for the earlier of the remainder of their terms, the next regular or special municipal election, or until their deaths or resignations?
Question 14: Shall the Charter of the City of Raymore, Article IX, Nominations and Elections, Section 9.4 be amended so that members of any Commission or Board appointed to represent individual City Council wards who are displaced following the realignment of ward boundaries shall be allowed to serve for the remainder of their terms?
Question 15: Shall the Charter of the City of Raymore, Article X, Initiative, Referendum and Recall be amended in various sections to: (a) Require that petitioners for any initiative, referendum or recall provide their voter registration address and date, and (b) Increase the time to certify any supplement petitions for recall, initiative or referendum from five (5) to ten (10) days?
Question 16: Shall the Charter of the City of Raymore, Article XIV, General Provisions, Section 14.7 be amended to increase the time to certify any supplement petition for charter amendment from five (5) to ten (10) days?