Why does it feel like our city chartered "Strong Mayor" form of government is being trampled on by a completely out of touch City Council?
Until a majority of Camasonians vote to amend this legal reality, let me remind you that Barry McDonnell is in charge of Camas. He is our duly elected Mayor, and he dictates exclusively the policy, procedure, and workflow from every single human resource employed by the City of Camas. It is his job to instruct city staff (in the absence of a City Administrator) to proceed exactly according to his community vision and strategic goals, and utilize the City Council in it's sole responsibility to approve or deny his requests and expenditures. City Councilors don't make policy in this form of government. Mayors do.
But Greg Anderson in Lacamas Magazine, channeling his inner-Alexander Haig, says he's running the City. All while McDonnell is vacationing in Spain. The "Mayor Pro-Tem" is loading expenditure agendas and policy and procedure votes to the brim in post COVID-19 outbreak City Council meetings, all while our Mayor is out of the Country. He and his Council are passing new laws to further limit public/council discourse (the Mayor's premier campaign promise and platform plank) all while McDonnell is not even in the room.
Why wouldn't our City Councilors vote to suspend all non-essential decisions at least until our Mayor can return and lead our City through this extraordinary time? Or is an $8 million dollar roundabout that important to a group of Councilors and staffers who have absolutely ZERO authority to direct our navigation through a recession-bound economy?
Despite our Strong Mayor form of government here in Camas, City Councilors appear to once again, be taking advantage of an unprepared electorate in crisis, all while ignoring the wishes of the People and the Mayor they elected.