Town to get first look at home rule charter
Carbondale’s proposed home rule charter doesn’t take the town in any new directions, but it provides guidelines should residents want to make changes in the future.”We tried to avoid any significant changes,” said Home Rule Charter Commission Chairwoman Debbie Quinn. “Our goal was to give the town as much flexibility as possible to take advantage of home rule, without dictating significant changes.”A secondary goal was practical. “We want to get the charter adopted,” Quinn said.The Home Rule Charter Commission will present the proposed charter at the Carbondale Board of Trustees meeting set for 7 p.m. tonight.Carbondale Town Clerk Suzanne Cerise said she expects trustees to set a home rule charter election for April 15 or April 29. If voters reject the home rule charter, the charter would go back to the commission for revisions, then return for a second vote later this year, Cerise said.If voters approve the charter, it goes into effect July 1.Home rule status gives municipalities broader governing powers than allowed under state statues. In Garfield County, Glenwood Springs, New Castle and Rifle are already home rule cities.For example, a charter can allow non-residents to vote in municipal elections. Quinn said the Carbondale commission discussed whether to extend the vote to non-residents, and to non-citizens, but decided against the idea.With home rule status, the town could still change its voting requirements through an ordinance, or the referendum process, Quinn said.Also on the agenda for the tonight’s trustees meeting:-The Keator Road planned unit development public hearing.-Public hearing for the Town Center.-Proposals for a Highway 133 design and engineering study.Contact Lynn Burton: 945-8515, ext. firstname.lastname@example.org
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