Here is a link to our WindTunneling website in which you can anonymously record all your ideas about what you would like to see in a charter.
You need to create an account with a login and password and voice your opinions. The project code is: MendoCountyCharter. After the final Town Hall meeting on April 23, we request you return to evaluate all the ideas that have been contributed. We intend to have the results ready for the new Charter Commission by June 7th.
Here is the introduction from the WindTunneling site:
California is a “limited home rule” state, which means that the state government gives municipalities the opportunity to increase their sovereignty with a home rule charter. CA is “limited” in that a charter county has only limited powers; a city charter may include a wide array of powers. These are from the CA Constitution:
Art. 1 (Declaration of Rights) §1. All people are by nature free and independent and have inalienable rights. Among these are enjoying and defending life and liberty, acquiring, possessing, and protecting property, and pursuing and obtaining safety, happiness, and privacy.
Art. XI (Local Government) § 3a. For its own government, a county or city may adopt a charter by majority vote of its electors voting on the question. The charter is effective when filed with the Secretary of State. A charter may be amended, revised, or repealed in the same manner. A charter, amendment, revision, or repeal thereof shall be published in the official state statutes… The provisions of a charter are the law of the State and have the force and effect of legislative enactments.
Art. XI § 4. County charters shall provide for:
(a) A governing body of 5 or more members, elected (1) by district or, (2) at large, or (3) at large, with a requirement that they reside in a district. Charter counties are subject to statutes that relate to apportioning population of governing body districts. (b) The compensation, terms, and removal of members of the governing body. (c) An elected sheriff, district attorney, assessor, whatever other officers, their election or appointment, compensation, terms and removal. (d) The performance of functions required by statute. (e) The powers and duties of governing bodies and all other county officers…. (f) The fixing and regulation by governing bodies, by ordinance, of the appointment and number of assistants, deputies, clerks, attaches, and other persons to be employed, i.e. the County CEO, and for prescribing and regulating them. (g) Whenever any county has framed and adopted a charter, and the same shall have been approved by the Legislature as herein provided, the general laws adopted by the Legislature in pursuance of Section 1 (b) of this article, shall, as to such county, be superseded by said charter…. (h) Charter counties shall have all the powers that are provided by this Constitution or by statute for counties.
Art. 11 § 7. A county or city may make and enforce within its limits, all local, police, sanitary, and other ordinances and regulations not in conflict with general laws.
WindTunneling is asking you to think about a Charter for Mendocino County, and what you think would be important and relevant provisions that you would like to see. How would you like to see our county organized?
We have set up 7 preliminary categories to help you prompt your thinking. Add as many ideas as you like in each category. Everyone gets to see every idea: no one knows or will know who shared which idea.