Letter: Should Albert Lea become home rule charter city?

Published 7:23 pm Thursday, July 5, 2018

The city of Albert Lea does the statutory city council-manager plan. So, any person who thinks if you get elected you’re going to fire people and change things right now, it’s not going to happen — unless the city charter is changed to make us a home rule charter city.

I believe in good communications, getting everyone working together to achieve the goals set, making sure every person and group is treated fairly, doing the things that will make this city a place people will look at as a place they’d like to live.

But right now, we need a lot of networking and positive thinking and just because you have a college degree, doesn’t mean you have a clue what you’re talking about. I’m sure George Marin would agree that common sense is the key to success — every time — and that has not been around here for a long time.

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Plan A statutory city

Cities using the Plan A form of organization are the most common type of city in our state. Plan A cities operate with a weak mayor-council. The Plan A city council consists of an elected mayor and four or six elected councilmembers. The city clerk and treasurer are appointed offices. Neither positions are members of the council. The clerk and treasurer positions may be combined into one appointed position.


Plan B statutory city

Any statutory city with a population over 1,000 may adopt the Plan B form. The Plan B form of government is also known as the council-manager plan. It consists of the elected mayor, four or six elected council members, and an appointed city manager. Although the council retains legislative and policy-making authority, administrative responsibilities (such as hiring and firing city employees) are delegated to the city manager.


Home rule charter city

Home rule cities derive their powers from a home rule charter, which also defines the specific powers of elected officials and appointed staff. The charter is, in effect, a local constitution. Charter adoption, amendment and abandonment procedures are found in state statutes. The charter may provide for any form of municipal government, as long as it is consistent with state laws that apply uniformly to all cities in Minnesota.

John Severtson

Albert Lea