Legislation Bexley City Council approved 7-0 on April 28 sets forth a new structure for the city's Environmental Sustainability Advisory Committee that was formed in 2018.

Ordinance 18-20 states the leadership of the group, which advises the city on how to implement environmentally friendly initiatives, will be appointed by the mayor, rather than all of its 15 members.

"The leadership is being changed to just an appointed chair, vice chair and an at-large member by the mayor, rather than the entire committee," said Richard Sharp, chairman of council's service and environmental committee, at the second reading of the ordinance he introduced at council's April 14 meeting.

Once the mayor has appointed the chairman, vice chairman and at-large member and council has approved the mayor's appointments, Ordinance 18-20 states the rest of the membership will be selected by these organizations: the Bexley City Schools, Capital University, Columbus School for Girls, St. Charles Preparatory School, the Bexley Public Library and the Bexley Area Chamber of Commerce.

With only three mayoral appointments, the new structure enables more flexibility in the committee's membership, Sharp said.

"It's more of a fluid-type organization as different issues come up. People have different interests, like the plastic-bags ban, vs. water sustainability, other waste-control issues," he said. "The membership can adapt with the leadership's understanding."

The mayor or a designee of the mayor, the chairman of council's service and environment committee, and the city's service director will serve as ex officio members who may attend and participate but not vote at ESAC meetings.

Kessler also said the new ordinance would allow the leadership to help members set priorities.

"Generally, we are appointing the leadership to the ESAC, and then they are propagating their membership, for the most part," he said. "It gives them the ability for new people to show up, roll up their sleeves and get active with that group."

In addition to Sharp, Kessler and council member Troy Markham, ESAC's members also include Elizabeth Ellman, chairwoman; Jennifer Ciccarelli, CSG representative; John Eikenberry, Bexley City Schools representative; Jim Lower, St. Charles representative; Paul Matthews, Capital University representative; Lesli Mautz, Bexley Area Chamber of Commerce representative; Drew Bergman; Joanne Grossman; Steve Grossman; Kathy Hayden; Rebecca Ness and Carol Kauffman Nowlin.

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