By Nadine L. Scott
Please come to the Charter Amendment workshop in Oceanside Feb. 15 at 4 p.m. Tell Felien and Kern there is no need to rush this to a June ballot. Among other things that will likely be proposed will be redistricting, appointment of clerk and treasurer, which will eliminate elections and independence, and a strong mayor, thereby eliminating the city manager. These are not the best ideas to protect the public but are great ideas to give all the power to the council. Remember Bell, Calif.?We the citizens know what we need to remove from the secretly developed charter and what we should add, and cannot let outside interests that gave us this charter in the first place make the rules for how Oceanside government works! Many believe the first place to start would be campaign finance reform. Plus the prohibition should be removed regarding PLAs since the state will not fund cities with that prohibition in place. And can you imagine Kern or Felien as a strong mayor? That proposal, if passed, means the mayor could appoint his cronies to all the positions in Oceanside, including treasurer and clerk! Those positions must remain independent or Oceanside could be the new Bell!
Please, come to this meeting and tell Kern, Feller and Felien to work on revenue producing projects for Oceanside. Ask that a commission of citizens be appointed to study charter amendments to be presented after thorough study and vetting by the public and by the city attorney. This process is the only serious way to ensure legitimacy. The citizens must stand up and categorically refuse to let only three members of the council determine what, if anything, goes on a ballot, and how the city should be run.
The Council Majority of Kern, Feller and Felien needs to focus on revenue generation — there can be no more cuts if we wish to keep our free libraries, our cops and our firefighter/paramedics as well as our senior centers, parks, pools, or other much needed services. Citizens must demand that council keep our services and the amenities that make our city a great place to live and do business in.
The proposed charter amendments being rushed onto the June Ballot without full citizen participation is just another power move by the majority on the City Council that will do nothing to enhance much needed revenues for Oceanside.
Nadine L. Scott is an Oceanside resident.