Home Rule Charter
The Town of Erie residents voted to approve a Home Rule Charter in November 2023. This new governing document dictates how the Town will be governed and includes details about the makeup and elections for the Town Council, how administration of the Town will be managed, how advisory boards and commissions will run, and more.
Home Rule Charter & Resolution
The Home Rule Charter Commission was created by a vote of the people in November 2022 and was tasked with drafting a governance Charter for the Town of Erie. The Charter Commission had a responsibility by State statute to complete a proposed Charter within 180 days from their election. The Charter was sent to the Board of Trustees on April 25, 2023 for that body to move the Charter forward as a ballot measure.
- Presented to the Board of Trustees and signed on April 25, 2023
- Charter was approved by voters on Nov. 7, 2023
The Commission consisted of nine members, all of whom had to be bona fide residents of the Town and were elected in the November 2022 Coordinated Election.
Watch Commission Meetings
View the full YouTube playlist of past meetings.
- April 13, 2023 - Summary of discussions/decisions
The Charter Commission Chari provided the following update and summary:
The April 13 Meeting was #18 for the Home Rule Commission. And that was the final working meeting. Next week (April 20, 2023) the Commission will meet to do a final review review for typos and grammar issues, vote on the resolution approving the Charter for the ballot, and sign the proposed Charter in preparation for it being put on the November 2023 ballot.
Then on the following Tuesday (April 25, 2023) the Commission will present the Charter to the Board of Trustees as the final step as the Home Rule Charter Commission. I'd like to thank everyone who put in public comments and attended any meeting, or answered any of our public outreach efforts. The constant feedback from Erie residents helped us immensely during this process.
Here's a summary of the major draft decisions made at yesterday's meeting.
- Set up the transition so that an entirely new Council will be elected in November of 2024, to create a clean break from Statutory Erie and move directly into Home Rule Erie.
- Most of April 13 was spent on final intent and wording clarity.
- Reviewed the resolution we will be voting on next week to ensure it meets the intentions of the Home Rule Commission. Passage of this resolution will be the official action the Commission are taking to finalize the text of the Charter to be voted on in November 2023.
Again, thank you everyone who has been following along and making this process run more smoothly than we Commissioners alone could have.
- March 30, 2023 - Summary of discussions/decisions
March 30, 2023 was Meeting #16 for the Home Rule Charter Commission. Next week (April 6) will be the required Public Hearing for the Home Rule Charter Commission.
A summary from the Charter Commission Chair of the major draft decisions is below. Note that these decisions are still subject to change.
- Items in the Charter have been rearranged for a more logical flow, and have separated sections to be better grouped for similar topics.
- The Commission decided to keep redistricting to the 10-year Census timeline to be as legally airtight as possible. Based on population growth projections, this can be planned to stay within the 10% population threshold discussed previously.
- The group removed the "intent" topic that was added to each section in order to keep the document as cleanly legal as possible.
- The entire Town Council will be elected in November 2024, to be seated in January 2025. This was done to ensure each of the new districts has an equal say in electing their representatives under the new system.
- If we allowed the two Trustees with terms expiring in 2026 to remain, they'd have to be assigned to a district and those districts would not get a say in at least one of their representatives, and potentially both if both Trustees ended up in the same district.
- To maintain staggered terms, the Councilor with the most votes in the November 2024 election in each district will be seated for 4 years, and the runner up will be seated for a 2 year term.
- The Charter will be leaving Councilor pay as it is currently (set by ordinance) and proposing alternative language that will be placed on the ballot along side the vote to approve the Charter.
- The alternative language will propose setting pay to $1,200/mo for Mayor (up from $500/mo), and $700/mo for Councilors (up from $300/mo), with a yearly increase tied to the Consumer Price Index (CPI) for our area.
- Remove from the Council the ability to set their own pay by ordinance.
- Reviewed the presentation we will be giving to the Board of Trustees on April 25. The presentation can be found on the agenda for this meeting.
April 6 will be the required Public Hearing, where public comment will be taken on the Charter in its most updated form. Please attend and provide comment if you can.
- March 23, 2023 - Summary of discussions/decisions
Summary from the Charter Commission Chair is forthcoming.