by Sam Hieb
Senate Bill 36 would shrink the size of the council, fundamentally change the role and powers of the mayor, lengthen council terms, and reduce the number of council members who are elected at-large.
The changes would mean that residents would vote for two council representatives — their district member and the mayor — instead of five.
The legislation also puts four current City Council members in the same newly drawn District 4. Council members Mike Barber, Marikay Abuzuaiter, Zack Matheny and Nancy Hoffmann would have to battle it out for a single seat.
Think the the N&R is fired up or what? Accompanying the banner headline is a front-page editorial calling Wade a “one-woman Nanny State” and residents to let local House members —the Senate “may pass anything that Wade and leader Phil Berger want”—know how they feel “through calls, letters, emails, and statements at council meetings and other public forums.”
I guess what gets me about our local paper of record is the concern about how Wade’s plan will dilute the power of voters while in the very same issue it praises the council for its 7-2 vote signing off a historical marker commemorating —-as the language was approved —-the “Greensboro Massacre.” With that vote, was the council taking into consideration the feeling of the majority of its citizens or caving to pressure from a fringe group that has held a grudge for last 36 years over an ugly incident that reflected well on nobody who was involved?