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Deadline for council seat election



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August 07, 2013 - Deadline to fill out a petition to serve as a city council member for City of the Village of Clarkston is Aug. 13 by 4 p.m.

Some may be wondering what exactly someone on city council does. An elected position, the council members perform duties like attend about two meeting every month meetings and make decisions for the city.

Councilwoman Peg Roth said she has learned a lot about how government works since serving on the council for the past seven years.

"I have also met a lot of interesting people," she said.

Currently there are four positions available to serve on the city council. One of the vacant positions are due to an empty seat vacated when City Manager Carol Eberhardt took the managerial position in April.

The city council follows the City Charter, which is a group of laws and rules that govern how the city operates. According to the charter, elected officials serve as the legislative power of the city. The council is composed of six council members and a mayor.

According to the city charter, the council shall have the power and authority to adopt ordinances and resolutions. Other duties of the council includes raising revenues and make appropriations for the operation of the city government. The council also "Provide for the public peace, health, safety and welfare of persons and property."

New council members must take an oath of office under the State constitution.

Qualifications to be a city council member include being a resident of the city for at least one-year prior to the election. The one-year rule also applies to anyone appointed when a seat is vacant and before an election can be held. No one that is in any way in default to the city can serve on the city council.

The mayor's duties include attending and presiding over all council meetings. Recognized as the "chief executive officer" of the city, the mayor is also considered the head of the city government for all ceremonial purposes, according to the City Charter.

"The mayor shall be a conservator of the peace, may exercise within the city the powers conferred upon sheriffs to suppress riot and disorder, and shall have authority to command the assistance of all able-bodied citizens to aid in the enforcement of the ordinances of the city and to suppress riot and disorder," according to the charter.

Council members may also conduct investigations along with many other duties.

City council members get paid $25 per meeting while the mayor receives $3,850 a year.

City council members are prohibited from holding any appointed city office position during their elected term. This prohibition can be waived by a majority vote of the council.

This happened when Eberhardt, who was serving on the city council, was hired as city manager. For a complete description and rules visit www.villageofclarkston.org.

Andrea Beaudoin

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