New York CIty Council Member Ben Kallos

Gotham Gazette With Tweaks, City Council Charter Revision Commission Bill Expected to Pass by Samar Khurshid

With Tweaks, City Council Charter Revision Commission Bill Expected to Pass

The Council’s commission will have 15 members charged with analyzing the broad structure and functions of city government, and is expected to carry out its work into next year. It’s recommendations will be presented to voters in the form of referenda, which Brewer, James, and others are hoping to see included on the ballot for the 2019 general election.

Of the 15 members, four each will be appointed by the mayor and Council speaker, while one each will be chosen by the five borough presidents, the public advocate, and the comptroller. The speaker will also appoint the chair of the commission. All those elected officials have come out in support of the proposal, except for de Blasio, who has insisted on a more limited mandate for his own commission, which some suspect he organized to preempt the Brewer-James-Johnson effort. Though by law it can review any aspect of city government, de Blasio’s commission is tasked by the mayor with looking at election administration, voter participation, and reducing the influence of money in politics.

De Blasio has said he wants his commission’s recommendations on the ballot this November.

Seemingly in response to the mayor’s reluctance to join the Council’s effort, the latest version of the Council’s proposal was amended to require that appointments be made in 60 days or forfeited.

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