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Another alternative is the city commission government system Portland Nike Air Max 90 Essential Women's Shoe

be elected by everyone, city wide, and not chosen by city councilors who are elected by district.

There are alternative political structures that might make it workable to Nike Air Max Green Glow choose the mayor by city wide direct election. However each of these comes with its own problems.

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Andrews states candidates for mayor should run on and be elected because of "a vision" for the city. I wonder if she has weighed the probable consequences of such a change in the way Bend chooses its political leadership.

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uses. The mayor and four other city councilors are elected directly city wide. As the city council, they serve as the legislative branch of the city's government. However, the mayor and each of the councilors also oversee the various city departments, called bureaus, functioning as department heads.

Whatever problems the City of Bend is struggling with, they are not caused by an inadequate government structure. Certainly, there have been voter disagreements with various decisions of the city council. Not everyone in Bend was on board for Juniper Ridge, and the city's proposed upgrade of the Tumalo Creek water system is facing a lot of resistance. Directly electing a part time mayor wouldn't have changed most of these decisions.

The existing city charter calls for members of the city council to be elected by district in non partisan elections. Each year, council members choose among themselves one of their own to serve as the city's mayor for one year. The duties of the mayor are limited: to chair council meetings and to represent the city at certain public functions such as ribbon cuttings and hosting dignitaries. I believe the mayor also has responsibility for setting the agendas for council meetings; however, they obviously must consult the council members in the process. Thus, Bend has a city council consisting of essentially co equal members who enjoy reasonably harmonious relations.

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Visions and restructuring government are what well meaning politicians and community leaders talk about when they have no real solutions to the problems facing their communities. The economies of Bend and Central Oregon are crippled. Unemployment is high (11+ percent), businesses are closing, Nike Air Max 90 All White Mens

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The mayor and the councilors are of necessity full time paid city officials. The mayor assigns the bureaus to the councilors, typically reserving the police department to himself/herself. This system mixes the legislative and executive functions of city government, contrary to the American tradition of separation of powers amongst distinct branches of government. One definite disadvantage of this system is that it creates opportunities for council members to use their assigned bureaus, no matter how mundane, as personal fiefdoms, platforms to advance their own political careers. Again, I suspect The Bulletin editorial board would resist implementing such a system in Bend.

The people of our region need their leaders to be self discipline and fiscally prudent. Let's focus on our "needs" and the "basics" and rebuild the local economy. Then, maybe someday, we can afford the "visions."

Any mayoral candidate elected directly by the people based upon a promised "vision" for the city will have created expectations on the part of the electorate expectations the voters will want fulfilled. However, as noted above, the mayor has very little, if any, powers of their own to fulfill those promises and satisfy those expectations. Granted, the mayor can seek to persuade the other council members to go along with their campaign platform. However, once the mayoral candidates start running for office on promises and platforms, we can expect the candidates for individual council seats also will campaign on their own promises and platforms. Inevitably, all those promises will be in conflict. Whose "vision" wins?

We Need Back to Basics

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What the mayor of Bend is not is the chief executive of the city. They definitely are not "mayor" in the sense of Rahm Emanuel in Chicago or Michael Bloomberg in New York City or even Sam Adams in Portland.

The first alternative is to make the position of mayor a full time paid position as chief executive officer of the city's government bureaucracy. This is how it is done in larger cities like New York and Chicago. The position of city manager would be abolished and the heads of city departments would report to the mayor. The city council would then become the legislative branch that approves budgets and city ordnances and insures the city bureaucracy, including the mayor, is doing the people's business. The problem with this alternative is that a part time city council would be at a distinct disadvantage vis vis a full time mayor who had the full resources of the city bureaucracy. Yet, there probably isn't enough work in Bend to occupy council members as full time paid officials. The city could give each councilor a paid staff, but that would cost money the city doesn't have. I suspect The Bulletin editorial board strongly would oppose this idea.

Ms. Andrew says the city needs a vision. Please, no more visions. Bend suffers from way too many visions that have been hugely expensive for little result: Juniper Ridge, a new city hall, hydro electric power from a water system upgrade, just to name a few. Meanwhile, the Parks and Recreation District is "visioning" a $31 million levy to fund a grab bag of "wants" and COIC is "visioning" a regional transit system that will prove to be a financial catastrophe.

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Nike Air Max Green Glow

and quality of life amenities are dying (Cascade Music Festival). The city can't expand its urban growth boundary because of state regulations and people who don't live here thwarting the effort. In short, we don't need visions and Bend certainly doesn't need to change the way the mayor is elected.

The unintended result will be to have transformed a system of electing city councilors who get along to a system of electing city councilors with their own agendas. There will be either political deadlock when nobody will break faith with the voters in their district or political deals agreed to by ever shifting political alliances among the councilors. Inevitably, many of these deals will be done in private, resulting in a loss of public transparency in the way the council operates. The city's voters will become disenchanted and lose faith in city government.

In a recent editorial, Pamela Andrews supported city wide direct election of the city mayor. Her argument was that the mayor is a) "the leader of the city" and as such b) should Nike Air Max Essential Beige

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