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Proposed Charter Changes Go to Council

The Charter Revision Commission held its public hearing on proposed changes to the Town Charter Monday before voting to forward the proposal to the Legislative Council.

Only a handful of people turned out Monday for the Charter Revision Commission's public hearing on the changes it is proposing be implemented to the Town Charter.

Those changes, including transitioning some elected offices from two- to four-year terms and decreasing the percentage of voters needed to petition a budget referendum, would be the first to the Town Charter in almost three decades.

The auditorium at Hamden Middle School was for the most part empty for the hearing, a fact that irked Dunbar Hill Civic Association president Bill Burns.

"People just don't care," he lamented to the commission. He attended 28 of the commission's 29 meetings, Burns said, and there were only a handful of people in attendance at those meetings as well.

On Tuesday, the commission's work will be formally submitted to the Legislative Council and to the Town Clerk's office, according to the commission's attorney Steven Mednick. The council then has 45 days to hold another public hearing on the document, he said.

From the date of the public hearing -- which has been set for May 25 at 7 p.m. at Thornton Wilder Auditorium at Miller Memorial Library -- the council then has 15 days to act on whether to send the changes to a vote this November.

If approved, it then has to formulate the question that will appear on the ballot, Mednick said.

John P. Flanagan May 18, 2011 at 10:56 AM
Just a quick comment for my former classmate ( from a long toime ago), Bill Burns. Bill I don't believe you know anyone who pays more attention to what's going on in Town than I do. So, please, can we stop the feigned indignation because you didn't have someone to sit with at every hearing. Had the Council appointed people who had actually worked within the current Charter, it might have made sense. But, it didn't! The Charter revison commisson hasn't been looking for citizen real input even in it's earliest meetings. And, the Charter revision commission has been running under the radar sight line due to other Town events of more immediacy since it started. Having read some of the vast potifications in the early minutes, I understand why. Until now, there has been little to react to. The existing charter only needed some tweaking. But, if they are talking about exposing the Town to 4 years of some of the disasters we'vew had for Mayor. The resultr needs to be round filed and sent back. The previous charter was sent back 3 times by the Council.
Thomas Alegi May 18, 2011 at 12:02 PM
Bill Burns is the president of the 40 member Dunbar hill Civic Association, which I am a member of. If Mr. Burns would have sent out a reminder e-mail to his members maybe there would have been more people at the Charter public hearing. Mr. Burns likes to criticize everyone and anything that’s just how Mr. Burns is, typical Hollywood type As far as having elected officials serve four years I agree with Mr. Flanagan two years is too long of a time for some people to be mayor or members of the Legislative Council.
Suzanne M. Miller May 18, 2011 at 09:55 PM
The most vocal Hamden citizens are far too busy trying to block a child care center to bother with the Charter hearings.

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