City manager bill approved; waiting for Governor's signature

It would take away power from the Mayor and give it to a new hired City Manager.

Posted: Mar 29, 2018 6:09 PM
Updated: Mar 29, 2018 8:39 PM

A decision on who and how the City of Decatur should be run is getting closer to being finalized.

It would take away power from the mayor and give it to a newly hired city manager.

It was supposed to happen several years ago, but never did.

Now a federal lawsuit and a state bill could change that.

"We've had a run of mayors our citizens in which are citizens were very dissatisfied with and that's certainly something that could occur again. We could have another disaster of a mayor," said Carl Cole who is an attorney on the case.

He represents Gary Voketz. Voketz's concerns were approved by voters to have Council Members hire a City Manager to run the City's day to day operations.

We've told you before that Voketz sued the City. The case is now in a federal appeals court.

"Today I'm serving in the Office of the Mayor. I'll continue to do that until another appointing authority directs me into another position," said Mayor Tab Bowling on Thursday.

He'll continue to do the job, but a state bill on the Governor's desk to be signed into law would also change that.

It would make it easier for City's to hire City Managers, reduce the Mayor's power, and ensure enough Council Members represent every city's diverse population.

"When you are dealing with a 60 million dollar budget. There are not a lot of people that are trained since college to deal with that type of thing," said Cole.

Depending on what the Federal Court decides or with Governor Kay Ivey's signature it looks like it won't be Mayor Bowling dealing with the City's budget in the future.

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