The city of Bexley is seeking residents to serve on a charter-review commission.
The commission is formed approximately every 10 years to study the city charter and provide recommendations to Bexley City Council concerning possible amendments.
"The purpose of (the charter review) is to bring together residents who are passionate about the city and the community to see if there are any changes that should be brought to the charter," Mayor Ben Kessler said. "Changes could be all sorts of forms. There could be form-of-government changes; there could be changes to different types of commissions that serve the city."
"From my perspective, there's no better community service that a resident can offer other than (being) an elected official. Mayor, council and auditor are obviously critically important to the city. Charter review is the next important role," said Councilman Tim Madison, who introduced Resolution 11-18, which council approved last August to form the commission this year.
"Why it's important is it happens every 10 years and it gives 15 residents -- or maybe more, depending on how many applications we get -- the opportunity to make critical decisions for the city of Bexley that will be in place for at least another 10 years," he said.
The resolution states the charter review commission will form on or after Oct. 15, and before Nov. 15, and conclude its work no later than Feb. 1, 2021. The city's charter covers everything from building codes to how city government's executive, administrative and legislative branches operate.
City Council members, Kessler and Auditor Bill Harvey can provide the charter-review commission with suggestions, but members ultimately will self-select issues to address, Madison said.
"My hope is that we have a very diverse committee. I hope past elected officials will apply for it, so we have that kind of institutional experience," he said. "I hope we have a very diverse background of people.
"I don't know that there's any particular kind of experience necessary; as long as the people are independent and critical thinkers. There's nothing more important than being critical thinkers."
After the charter-review commission concludes its work, council reviews the commission's recommendations, with voters getting the final say about any possible changes to the charter, Kessler said.
"With any charter changes, it would come first to council for ratification and then go to the ballot" for voters to approve, Kessler said.
Kessler said all Bexley residents of legal age are invited to apply.
"Part of the beauty of a charter-review commission is it can potentially bring together people from all sorts of backgrounds. It would give the insight to bring them into the charter review process," Kessler said. "This is kind of a core kernel, the essence of how government works. I don't think you need any particular kind of experience to bring value to that."
Interested residents should send a cover letter and resume to Debbie Maynard at email@example.com by July 15. To view the current charter, visit bexley.org/code.