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Charter review deserves time

Charter review deserves time

first_imgMayor Meg Kelly has formed a new Charter Review Commission comprised of the commissioners and deputies, to review the existing charter and propose improvements. Fortunately, the 2016-17 Charter Commission produced a compendium of recommendations in this direction (separate from the Council Manager proposal) that the new commission would do well to consider.Amending the existing charter was our hedge against the possibility that the council/manager proposal was defeated at the polls. So in this way, at least, the mayor’s initiative is in keeping with the former commission’s mandate. If the new commission’s proposal is on the November ballot, there will be plenty of time and space to comment.For now, advocates of charter change need to lower their voices so that the discussion can be heard how the commissioners want to change things. We also need to give Mayor Kelly the consideration due to anyone who enters a competitive election and ends up on top. The voters made their choice, and the outcome deserves its time on the stage.GORDON BOYDSaratoga SpringsThe writer was treasurer of the 2016-17 Charter Review Commission.More from The Daily Gazette:EDITORIAL: Thruway tax unfair to working motoristsSchenectady, Saratoga casinos say reopening has gone well; revenue down 30%EDITORIAL: Beware of voter intimidationEDITORIAL: Find a way to get family members into nursing homesFoss: Should main downtown branch of the Schenectady County Public Library reopen? Categories: Letters to the Editor, OpinionLast November’s referendum on the Saratoga Springs City Charter produced an excruciatingly close result. The 10-vote margin against change, out of more than 9,000 cast has, if anything, amplified the voices on both sides who want the issue to be settled their way. As a member of the former Charter Review Commission and an activist in the Yes campaign, I think it is in everyone’s best interest at this point to lower the volume and give the community a breather.last_img read more

Former foes endorse Martelly

Former foes endorse Martelly

first_imgNewsRegional Former foes endorse Martelly by: – March 14, 2011 Share 32 Views   no discussions Share Sharing is caring!center_img Share Tweet Five candidates who were defeated in the first round of Haiti’s presidential election have given their support to pop singer Michel Martelly in the second round run-off.Mr Martelly will face former first lady Mirlande Manigat in the 20 March vote. The five candidates said Mr Martelly was the candidate most likely to promote democracy and development. But they said the best solution would have been to annul the first round because of widespread fraud.In a joint statement, defeated candidates Josette Bijou, Wilson Jeudy, Genard Joseph, Chavanne Jeune and Eric Smarki Charles praised Mr Martelly for the “spirit of openness” he had shown in his campaign. “We urge all our supporters in all corners of the country to go out and vote in mass for Michel Martelly to become president on Sunday 20 March,” the statement said.ControversyThe Martelly camp also received a boost at the weekend when hip-hop star Wyclef Jean performed at a campaign-rally concert for the candidate in Gonaives, Haiti’s third largest city. But the candidates added that the “best solution for democracy” would have been to annul the “masquerade” of the first round. Ms Manigat won the most votes in the first round, but opinion polls give Mr Martelly a slight lead ahead of next weekend’s decisive vote.The election to chose a successor to outgoing Haitian president Rene Preval has been mired in controversy. International observers said the first round on 28 November was marred by fraud and intimidation.Violent unrest broke out when Haiti’s electoral authorities announced initial results that put the governing Inite party candidate Jude Celestin in second place.Pressure from abroadThe second round was postponed, and experts from the Organisation of American States and the Caribbean Community (Caricom) were called in to assess the result. They found there had been large-scale fraud in Mr Celestin’s favour, and recommended he withdraw. After sustained international pressure, the electoral authority announced new results which put Mr Martelly through to the run-off against Ms Manigat.Whoever wins the election faces the task of rebuilding Haiti after last year’s huge earthquake, which killed around 230,000 people and left the capital, Port-au-Prince, in ruins.Source: BBC Caribbeanlast_img read more