Nanaimo City Hall. (News Bulletin file photo)

Nanaimo City Hall. (News Bulletin file photo)

LETTER TO THE EDITOR: Empower citizens to elect managers in city

Mayors and councils come and go while managers retain their positions, notes letter writer

To the editor,

Perhaps it is time to empower taxpayers to elect the senior managers of Nanaimo.

Residents cast their ballot to elect a mayor and councillors who are most suitably qualified to address the operation of Nanaimo and concerns of the citizens. It cannot be expected that any singular person be an expert in all the intricacies to operate a city, so managers are brought in.

Managers offer budgets, reports, and recommendations to the elected officials for approval. The managers, to the best of their abilities, attempt to fulfil their roles, presumably hired as the best and the brightest, to serve the citizens.

However, this model may be perceived to create a division between the citizens of the city and those who manage the services. Mayors and councils come and go, but managers operate the city for as long as they can retain their positions.

What if a citizen perceives a manager as not providing the basic services of the city, wasting taxpayer dollars, outsourcing their duties to consultants, or being out of touch with current needs of the city? The accepted procedure is to complain to the council, the same people who depend on the recommendations of the managers.

Empowering the citizens of Nanaimo to elect persons to managerial positions would eliminate this division, and allow for direct interaction to create a city that grows with the vision of its citizens, as opposed to the vision of a select few.

Paul Fruehwirth, Nanaimo

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The views and opinions expressed in this letter to the editor are those of the writer and do not reflect the views of Black Press or the Nanaimo News Bulletin.

Letters policy: Letters should be no longer than 250 words and will be edited. Preference is given to letters expressing an opinion on issues of local relevance or responding to items published in the News Bulletin. Include your address (it won’t be published) and a first name or two initials, and a surname. Unsigned letters will not be published.

Mail: Letters, Nanaimo News Bulletin, 777 Poplar St., Nanaimo, B.C. V9S 2H7

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Letters to the editor