Mayor eyes change to ‘pass’ vote

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Watts calls Rockwood’s method ‘a real problem ... as long as I can remember’

By Cindy Simpson

Potential changes to the Rockwood City Charter will be discussed by city officials this week.
“We aren’t talking about a great deal of changes, per se,” said Mayor James Watts.
“What we are looking at, as you know, we changed our election date. Our charter says our election will be held in June. That kind of thing.”
The Rockwood City Council workshop on the charter will begin at 5:30 p.m. Sept. 19, in Rockwood City Hall.
Watts said he also wants to look at some changes in how the Council votes on matters. These include ways to approach the “pass” vote.
Council members “pass” on the vote when they don’t officially approve or disapprove of the matter at hand.
“The pass vote has been a real problem for the city as long as I can remember,” Watts said.
He said he wants to “do something with the pass vote where it doesn’t cripple your administration.”
Passing on a vote often fails the motion on the floor and sometimes prevents the mayor from breaking a tied vote.
“There are some vote patterns I think we can look at,” Watts said.
Watts said he wasn’t aware of anything council members may want to change in the charter.
The last city charter change effort was in 2000, Watts said, but it did not take place.
He believes the last change was likely in the late 1980s or 1990s.
“It has been a long, long, long time ago,” Watts said.