The Norman Transcript

Letters

June 23, 2013

Residents should have vote

NORMAN — Editor, The Transcript:

On Friday, June 7, 2013, an article in The Norman Transcript titled “City charter chatter heating up” hit the front page.

On Thursday, June 6, 2013, a “city charter commission” voted to recommend the removal of a city charter provision requiring voter approval for all utility increases in Norman. This commission is comprised of former city council members, city mayors or people who have served the city on various other committees.

Several reasons were given to support such a vote:

· The voter process is costly and unnecessary.

· Norman is the only city in the state requiring a popular vote before increasing utility rates.

· There may not be enough time for an election.

· If the city charter is revised to eliminate voter approval, the city council still would be required to approve any utility rate increase.

1. As a longtime Norman resident, taxpayer and voter, I believe in the right to vote for any and all increases in Norman utility rates. Norman voters have had the right and responsibility to vote for our utility rate increases since the 1970s. At that time, the voters and taxpayers demanded this provision be added to the city charter as a reaction to the city increasing utility rates to pay for additional police.

The city council did not act responsibly then, and what will ensure they continue to act responsibly in the future, if the right to vote on utility increases is removed? I agree that the voting process has a cost, but this is a cost we must pay to ensure the people of Norman have a say and safeguard in future city direction. Voter input is required and voting is necessary to ensure those responsible for our future are held accountable.

2. The article also mentioned that city of Norman utility rates are the lowest of any town its size in the state. I believe the citizens’ right to vote is the reason for these lower rates. I also believe there are increasing needs for water, sewer and trash collection.

Text Only | Photo Reprints
Letters
  • Health care needs have reached critical stage

    Once again, the Republican-led Oklahoma legislators are leaving Oklahoma’s neediest in the dust with their proposed 2014-2015 budget. Studies by the Oklahoma Health Care Authority and the Oklahoma Department of Mental Health and Substance ...

    April 24, 2014

  • Reform is necessary

    Editor, The Transcript: Last year, the legislature passed laws reforming the Oklahoma Department of Veterans Affairs, which was a good start, but more is needed. Recent media reports have revealed that the ODVA employs M.D. and D.O. ...

    April 20, 2014

  • Keep your brain cells

    Editor, The Transcript: Hey kids. Four centuries ago, Shakespeare wrote about life’s seven great adventures. I forget his exact words, but they were something like this: 1. Our birth; none of us can remember it, but never the less, it is ...

    April 20, 2014

  • Necessary services may be reduced

    Editor, The Transcript: There were criticisms of the Oklahoma Senate bill for a test project to privatize management of Medicaid; however, no one mentioned a critical issue of reduced services for the more needy of our society....

    April 20, 2014

  • Enforcement not the issue

    Editor, The Transcript: The government is legally right in the U.S. Government vs. Bundy Ranch matter....

    April 20, 2014

  • Family thanks community, takes issue with photo

    Editor, The Transcript: As I write this, it’s been almost eight weeks since Feb. 17, the day my family’s home burned in a fire. We lost our 15-year-old cat, Misti; 7-year-old dog, Sully; 3-year-old rescue squirrel, Rocky; almost 2-year-old ...

    April 20, 2014

  • Norman should act wisely

    Editor, The Transcript: The fact that the city of Norman sells water for oil/gas drilling (or any other purpose) for less than half what they pay Oklahoma City when buying water, and while Norman residents are on rationing, is an act of ...

    April 18, 2014

  • Fallin should help residents

    Editor, The Transcript: I see this week that our empty skirt of a governor asked the federal government (small business administration) for much money. She is concerned about the suffering of the business owners in Lexington and Purcell ...

    April 17, 2014

  • League of Women Voters meeting

    Editor, The Transcript: On Saturday, May 10, the Norman League of Women Voters will hold its annual meeting at the Memorial Presbyterian Church, 601 24th Ave. SW, Norman, OK, from 11:30 am to 1:30 pm....

    April 12, 2014

  • Frackers should use gray water

    Editor, The Transcript: As reported by Joe Wertz in the March 31 issue of StateImpact Oklahoma, Finley Resources, a Texas-based oil drilling company, has arranged with the city of Norman to buy Norman’s drinking water from hydrants to use ...

    April 11, 2014