A Backwards Lesson in Government Structuring

A point of extended discussion at tonight’s Tiverton Charter Review Commission meeting was how citizens can be given some sort of budgetary power when 86% of the budget is untouchable by them because it is bound up in contracts. Looking at a flow chart of the budgetary process in Tiverton, commissioner Frank Marshall asked who is ultimately responsible for budgetary decisions.

After quite a bit of debate, the answer is: ultimately the voters. And how do they know whom to hold responsible?
Personally, I don’t see the big mystery about giving the voters a greater say in those “untouchable” contracts: give them the electorate’s power over the key negotiator. Tiverton’s executive authority currently rests with a town administrator whom the town council hires. Perhaps if he were elected, the town would have a point man whose employment would more directly rely on citizens’ getting the government that they desire or, alternatively, an elected watchdog in the town government.
Changing the administrator to the mayor strikes me as within the purview of a charter review commission.

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16 years ago

Hey Katz, in case you haven’t noticed, nobody really reads your posts about Tiverton’s irrelavent town government. You’re the only one, because you’re the only person on this site from Tiverton.
And why are you so wishy washy? Why do you say you “agree” with that professor from URI who says people who can’t afford to have children should have them?
No wonder why the former Cranston mayor said this site is so uninspiring.

Justin Katz
16 years ago

Although I’ve no illusion that there is a mass audience for Tivertonalia, you’re wrong that nobody reads these posts. We have readers from Tiverton and the surrounding area. The principles can often be extrapolated for broader usage. And of course, everybody cares when these local backs-and-forths result in something newsworthy, such as a banned Easter Bunny, retired lesbian teachers extending healthcare to their MA-married partners, or bridges that are in danger of collapsing, but that may not be replaced as expediently as possible because of design and cost spats.
Indeed, you yourself commented (as Neitzsche) to this post related to the Tiverton school committee’s issues.
But hey, if you don’t want to read these posts, don’t.
However, I’d request that, when you do read a post and then comment on it, that you read slowly enough that you understand what’s actually been said. With respect to that URI professor’s comment, what I said was that I agreed with her statement, but that her statement was either spin or a delusion when placed beside what she actually meant, with which I do not agree.

16 years ago

With repsect to Tiverton, fine. But I think you’re wasting your time. This is a statewide blog. “anchor rising”.
As to why someone like you would say that you agree with a socialist like that URI professor is flat out perplexing. Dan Yorke didn’t say that only wealthy people should have children. He said only people who could afford children should have them. She then said that was riddiculous. She’s a socialist.
The point behind all this is that you’re simply not a fighter, and that’s why this blog is so uninspiring. Have you ever posted anything about how we need to move to a voucher system in rhode island? No, you’d rather dance around stupid points with Pat Crowley, and confuse everyone in the process. But that’s just one example.
You’re passive. That’s the problem with the RI. GOP, but it’s not just you. Gio Cicione is passive. Governor Carcieri is passive. And the members of the legislature besides Trillo, they’re downright laughable. State Senator Ed Bates anyone? lol
The party needs fighters like former Cranston Mayor Stephen Laffey and Joe Trillo. We don’t needs people like you who dance around issues and go into way too much stupid detail as opposed to making clear, straight forward points.

16 years ago

You’re catching on with the mayor thing and it can be a reality as long as the true census numbers are shown next time around. From what I’ve heard an administrator has to be elected after a certain population number is reached. Since the population hasn’t “miraculously” exceeded 15,000+ for the last 20 years I’d bet the mark is somewhere around 16-18K.

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