Council votes down resolution to change form of government - - Jackson, MS

Council votes down resolution to change form of government

Source: WLBT Source: WLBT
Source: WLBT Source: WLBT
Source: WLBT Source: WLBT
JACKSON, MS (Mississippi News Now) -

At Tuesday's meeting, Jackson City leaders considered changing the way city government operates. Talks centered on doing away with the current Mayor-Council form of government to go to a Council-City Manager system. 

The plan to change the way Jackson city government works was introduced by Ward 4 Councilman De'Keither Stamps, but the measure failed in a 3 to 1 vote.

The City manager form of government would allow a city manager to make policy recommendations to the mayor and council.
The mayor and council may or may not adopt them. The mayor would also have a vote.

Residents voiced their thoughts on the proposal.

"We got to do something to show them our government is competent, whether we got to get rid of council and mayor and establish a new one," said Corinthian Sanders of Jackson.

"We could have better government through an articulated form by where we put on paper what we want to do," said Edward Hugh. "We can't get everything we want, but we could get something."

City leaders said the current mayor-council form of government has been in place for 30 years.

The Ward 4 representative said a change would deliver more equitable investment all around the city.

"I'm pushing for something that resembles the county where you have five folks that determine the direction of the city, and we have an administrator that is accountable to all of us," said Councilman Stamps.

After the defeated resolution, Jackson Mayor Tony Yarber said he has seen the Council-City Manager system work, but it should not be delved into without understanding the flaws of the existing structure.

"The current form of government can work, but what has to happen there has to be a real willingness of the individuals who sit in those seats," said Yarber. "The seats themselves don't matter. It's the people who sit in those seats".

Some council members suggested doing a study before the vote, but Stamps urged the body to take action. There are talks that a petition is circulating in support of the measure.

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