Come Election Day, the city of Homestead will be on the ballot.
On Nov. 8, three changes in the city charter will be put before voters. The amendments would affect the vice mayor’s seat and vacancies on the council.
▪ Under the first proposed change, the vice mayor would be selected by the City Council instead of by residents on election day.
According to the current charter, anyone can run for vice mayor but they have to run for a council seat too. The vice mayor seat comes with a two-year term, but it is not attached to a particular district. Technically, anyone wanting to run for vice mayor has to run for two seats — a district council seat and the seat of the vice mayor. Confused? That’s why the council wants to change the charter.
▪ The second proposed charter amendment would require the vice mayor to assume the responsibilities of the mayor if the mayor dies or leaves office, instead of having the liberty to decline them.
Currently, the charter also says that if the vice mayor accepts the responsibilities of the mayor, he/she cannot return to their original council seat upon the mayor’s return, if the leave was temporary. The charter change proposes that the vice mayor be allowed to return to his or her seat if the mayor returns or if one is elected.
▪ And lastly, the city is proposing that any empty council seat be filled by a city council appointment until the next election is held.
The charter currently says that the empty seat shall be appointed only if there’s a year or less left in the seat’s term. If there is more than a year, a special election would have to be held for that seat.
For more information contact the Homestead City Clerk’s office at 305-224-4442.