I understand that reporters usually don’t write the headlines and that the SUN is training new people but someone over there must by now understand the Plan E form of Government here in Lowell.(Unless Lyle Moran has returned, then it’s understandable)
This Headline for a story about the City Council meeting tomorrow night, states:
However, anyone with even a basic understanding of Plan E, knows the Mayor or any other City Councilor CANNOT ADD ANYTHING to the CITY BUDGET!
Section 104 Powers, rights and duties of city manager Except as otherwise specifically provided in this chapter, it shall be the duty of the city manager to act as chief conservator of the peace within the city; to supervise the administration of the affairs of the city; to see that within the city the laws of the commonwealth and the ordinances, resolutions and regulations of the city council are faithfully executed; and to make such recommendations to the city council concerning the affairs of the city as may to him seem desirable; to make reports to the city council from time to time upon the affairs of the city; and to keep the city council fully advised of the city’s financial condition and its future needs. He shall prepare and submit to the city council budgets as required of the mayor by section thirty-two of chapter forty-four and, in connection therewith, may, to the extent provided by said section thirty-two in the case of a mayor, require the submission to him, by all departments, commissions, boards and offices of the city, of estimates of the amounts necessary for their expenses and
Section 107. Neither the city council nor any of its committees or members shall direct or request the appointment of any person to, or his removal from, office by the city manager or any of his subordinates, or in any manner take part in the appointment or removal of officers and employees in that portion of the service of said city for whose administration the city manager is responsible..
While Mayor Elliot acts like he’s the “Strong Mayor” of Lowell and his “Big Brother” is the current City Manager, he cannot increase anything but his already large ego and 3 months after approving the largest Tax Increase in the past six years, now ask this Manager and his staff to find cuts of approx. $500,000 for 10 new Lowell Police Officers.
If he insist on submitting this motion, which is nothing but the worse kind of Political Grandstanding and his fellow Councilors go along with it than the first cut made should be the newly created 3rd ASST. CITY MANAGER position that wasn’t in the budget that this City Council passed. You can’t allow the Manager to create a new position then turn around and cut Parks and Recreation, Close Fire Stations or cut DPW employees.
In addition, with the announcement last month by the Manager and Police Supt. about creating a new unit of 10 officers on the late-night shift and expanding the police gang and narcotics unit plus adding a state police crew to cover the city on afternoons and evenings this should be given the chance to succeed and wait 3 months or so to see if it worked.
If the Mayor wanted 10 – 20 extra Police, he should have brought the request forward in June, not 3 months into the budget. While increasing the Police force is a notable idea, there is a proper way to do this and that would be by motion in April or May while the Manager is PRE-pairing a budget NOT 3 months after one has been approved.
The Sun, it’s reporter and which ever Editor allowed this False , Misleading and Inaccurate Headline is either ill-informed on the Plan E Charter or is auditioning to replace Lyle Moran has the Mayor’s Press Agent!