LETTER: Propositions will help city government be more efficient

Friday, March 26, 2010 | 3:00 p.m. CDT

In a few days, citizens will have an opportunity to vote on several “housekeeping” propositions affecting the efficiency of city government. These propositions were suggested by city staff. The City Council authorized their presentation on the April 6 ballot.

Proposition 2 would allow an assistant city manager to serve in the city manager’s absence. Now, only a department head may serve.

Proposition 3 would allow fund transfers between city departments or agencies any time during the fiscal year, with council approval. Now, transfers can’t be made during the first six months.

Proposition 4 removes the requirement that the Columbia Water and Light Department director must be a registered engineer. The current requirement emphasizes technical ability rather than leadership and management.

Proposition 5 allows the city clerk more time to process petitions for candidates and issues. Current provisions make it hard to accommodate weekends, holidays and regular workload.

Proposition 6 allows city fund deposits to be secured in banks by the same kinds of instruments that secure state and county funds. Now, the city may only accept obligations of the U.S. government as security for banking purposes.

Please strongly consider voting “yes” on all five. For more information, visit the city’s website at

Darwin Hindman is mayor of Columbia, and Bill Watkins is city manager of Columbia.

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