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Council Should Not Depend on Others to do Their Work

02/15/2008
by

p1010001.jpg Recently, Warren City Council has been criticizing the Law Department, and the Law Director, for not providing “draft resolutions” and “draft ordinances” in a timely manner, in other words…quickly.

It seems that the two ideas, Warren City Council and quickly don’t really go hand in hand.

A proposal that has been floating around for many a years, and by better minds than mine, is that Council have a Clerk of Council and then have a second person, a Legislative Aide.

This Legislative Aide would operate as a paralegal and would help Council in drafting its resolutions and ordinances.

The Law Department should not be writing these pieces of legislation but should only be there to advise Council on the legality, and constitutionality, of Council’s work.

As an example, you don’t see the State of Ohio’s Attorney Generals Office writing the State Senates, or the State House of Representatives, pieces of legislation but you do see the AG’s Office advising them on the legal aspects of their drafts.

Council should be more involved with the research and development of their “work”.

Let’s take a look at how Council ignores the Law Department.

In a recent draft resolution on liquor control, proposed by Mr. Novak and City Council, the Law Department told them that it would not be “legal” and basically it couldn’t be written. Mr. Novak ignored that advise and had them write it anyway, which has been proved to be unworkable and unconstitutional.

So, Council, hire yourself an “Aide”, do your research and leg work and let the Law Department do their work in advising.

Oh by the way, if you are told that something is illegal and/or unconstitutional, then listen and don’t go forward, for that’s how “advise and consent” works in the Executive, Legislative and Judicial form of Government.

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