After reading the past few weeks of people's opinions regarding our present form of government, I would like to bring out a few points of interest to our citizens of East Providence. A change in government can only come from a majority vote on a ballot referendum. But before the public can vote, the proposed change of government would need to get on the ballot in the first place. That would require a City Council resolution, or a petition from 10 percent of registered voters.
A city manager is usually hired by the council (an elected body) while a strong mayor is directly elected by the people of that city. The two functions are similar...in theory. Mayors tend to be much more cautious due to political considerations.
A city manager must meet the qualifications for the position while a mayor does not.
A city manager must have experience/knowledge along with a college degree, while a mayor does not.
A city manager who performs poorly on the job can be removed immediately while a mayor will be in office for four years or be removed by a time-consuming and expensive recall.
A city manager participates in the hiring of management positions after candidates have been screened and deemed qualified, while a mayor can hire friends, family and campaign contributors.
A city manager is chosen by the council, therefore he or she doesn't come into the position with special interests or their own agenda, while a mayor may have special interests/projects/agendas that he or she will push through without considering what it might do to other areas of government, he or she will have their decisions possibly being influenced by campaign contributions.
One thing I know the City of East Providence will be here in five years but at what cost to the taxpayers, I’m not recommending any form of government for I our city, but we need to look into what is best for the community.