Kangaroo Councils make the case for UniGov

If you haven’t been following the three-ring circus in Moraine and Huber Heights, I can’t blame you. There is enough political drama at the National and State levels to keep you occupied. However, it’s this kind of topsy-turvy government that doesn’t serve anyone well, especially the citizens.

Here are brief excerpts from two recent Dayton Daily News stories

Moraine commission OKs changes to give City Council more control
Another recommendation approved bypasses the chain of command for Council members to work directly with the city manager regarding day-to-day activities.

The recommendation would allow the Council to work directly with city employees.

The whole point of the City Manager form of government is to keep the politicians out of the day-to-day, and to focus on strategy and direction of an empowered City Manager.

Clashes tarnished Huber Heights city manager
Beginning last summer, Armocida became embroiled in a series of events pitting staff against council, and some council members say she didn’t navigate the divide in a way that served them well.

“Dismissal was due to the city manager’s inability to control the animosity and divisiveness that had evolved between City Council and administrative staff throughout 2007 and 2008,” Councilwoman Karen Kaleps wrote shortly after her firing. “One of the responsibilities of a city manager is to promote and ensure a harmonious relationship between council, department heads and city employees.”

The council has not provided specifics about why Armocida was terminated from her job, which paid $117,000 annually.

Huber Heights has seen several high level defections in the last year, suggesting the problem is more about the council than the professionals. The Council isn’t supposed to have a relationship with the department heads or the city employees. That’s the point of this form of government.

With people lamenting the lack of choice at higher levels of government, how are we supposed to find competence at the lowest levels? If we moved to UniGov, we’d only have to find a few qualified, quality people, instead of a bevy of clowns in every community.

Your thoughts?

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