Council committee looks for public input on election process

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, December 5, 2018

SALISBURY — A committee studying the process by which City Council members are elected will meet to discuss how the mayor should be chosen at 5:30 p.m. today.

Residents are invited to share their input about City Council elections during the meeting at 1 Water St.

At an October meeting, most people who attended agreed that voters should have the final say in a referendum. They discussed the pros and cons of having a seven-member council or staying with five members. They also talked about whether the mayoral choice should be in a separate election.

The mayor is currently chosen by the City Council from among council members.

At an earlier meeting, there was a consensus that all the races should remain nonpartisan.

At today’s meeting, Councilwoman Tamara Sheffield wants to continue to consider the election process piece by piece and make small decisions, but she said she understands how interconnected the pieces are.

“It’s about what fits our city,” Sheffield said. “We need to make sure we’re doing it right.”

She said she would like to see more participants.

“I would like to hear more voices,” she said, adding that at the last meeting, there were about 23 people and there are 33,000 Salisbury residents.

She encouraged those who attend to bring three more people or for those who can’t attend to send her an email at offering suggestions about how the election process should change.

The committee’s goal is to have the election process updated ahead of the 2021 election.