New Haven’s Board of Aldermen hopes to appoint the 15 members of the city Charter revision commission by mid-March, Ward 26 Alderwoman Lindy Lee Gold, the chairwoman of the board’s Legislation Committee, said yesterday.
Gold said she would like any revisions recommended by the commission to appear before voters this November, even though the state law governing the Charter reform process allows the panel a full 18 months to complete its mission.
New Haven’s charter — effectively its constitution — governs everything from the lengths of elected officials’ terms to the number of seats on the Board of Aldermen.
Gold said she has asked all aldermen to re-read the charter in preparation for her committee’s next meeting on March 11.
“I’ve asked them to re-read it, redline it, and then, time permitting, give me suggestions they have,” Gold said.
Gold wants to appoint 15 members to the commission — the maximum number allowed by law. Under the state guidelines, no more than five of the panel’s members may be aldermen.
“I would certainly expect to have representation of Democrats, Republicans and Greens,” she said.
The commission must notify Connecticut’s Secretary of the State by August if it wants to put its proposals on the ballot this November, Gold said. Otherwise, the commission must wait until November 2003.
During the last round of Charter revisions a decade ago, the commission took its full allowance of 18 months.
“We have a timeline on which we need to operate if we want to go on the November ballot,” Gold said. “The last Charter revision did a very thorough job, and I’m not certain we need to take 18 months this time around.”