You're Viewing the Archives
Return to IVN's Frontpage

City Council President Outlines San Diego Mayor Duties

by Michael Higham, published

City Council President Tony Young has proposed an outline for the next mayor and council. With the city's recent shift to a strong mayor system of local government, the next mayor will have considerable power in local decision-making. Councilman Young is making sure San Diego Mayor duties are in-tune with the City Council. The announcement took place on Sep. 19th, 2012.

The plan is entitled "10 Principles of Good Governance" and San Diego 6 has reported on the announcement. These are the provisions that are directly related to the upcoming mayor:

  • Speak at City Council meetings monthly to report on significant financial and operational issues that impact the city;
  • Work with the council to reduce the backlog of capital projects, which is in the hundreds of millions of dollars;
  • Help develop annual "Statements of Budgetary Principals," which were first adopted in 2008 as working agreements between the mayor and council;
  • Adhere to a set of financial practices first used in 2010 by the City Council to deal with the structural budget deficit;
  • Respect mid-year budget amendments passed by the City Council;
  • Publicly report performance results for core city services;
  • Present the council each November with a five-year outlook for city income and expenses; and
  • Work with the council to develop a comprehensive plan for economic growth

The strong mayor position is going to put either candidate Bob Filner or Carl DeMaio in a city chief executive role. Councilman Young's proposal brings the mayoral position to be more accountable to the City Council, however. The change in San Diego Mayor duties might increase the efficiency of the local government since information sharing and fiscal planning is paramount in the proposal.

Judging from candidate Bob Filner's plan for education, the City Council would be included in his plan. Filner sets provisions for the city, county, and public schools to link communications on San Diego's needs. Communications would include performance reports for youth development. Education is one issue, but emphasizing the need to work together might spread to other local government duties.

As a current City Councilman, Carl DeMaio could be more inclined to work with the city council. He has been endorsed by two current Councilmembers, Lorie Zapf and Kevin Faulconer. DeMaio stated, "I'm committed to building a strong team at City Hall of reformers who will work together," when the endorsements were made back in June.

Both candidates, Filner and DeMaio, are supportive of this plan and will likely adhere to its provisions.

The strong mayor form of local government was adopted in 2006 and approved by 60% of voters in 2010 through Proposition D. Strong mayor works similarly to how the federal government works. The Mayor being the executive and the City Council being the legislature. Before 2006, the mayoral position was the ninth seat in the city council. The chief executive of local government was a council appointed position known as City Manager.

About the Author