Last Edited
07/25/12

City Charter

ADOPTED 11-4-75 Effective 1-1-76

REVISED 11-3-81 Effective 1-1-82
 

Table of Contents

ARTICLE I - INCORPORATION AND POWERS

Section 1.01 Incorporation
Section 1.02 Powers of the City
Section 1.03 Manner of Exercising of Power
Section 1.04 Construction
Section 1.05 Intergovernmental Relations

ARTICLE II - COUNCIL

Section 2.01 Powers
Section 2.02 Membership and Term
Section 2.03 Removal
Section 2.04 Council as a Continuing Body
Section 2.05 President of Council
Section 2.06 Organization
Section 2.07 Quorum
Section 2.08 Journal
Section 2.09 Meetings
Section 2.10 Council Relationship to Administrative Officers
Section 2.11 Legislative Procedure
Section 2.12 Reading Requirements
Section 2.13 Emergency Ordinances
Section 2.14 Actions Not Permitted as Emergencies
Section 2.15 Public Notice Before Adoption
Section 2.16 Effective Date of Ordinances and Resolutions
Section 2.17 Public Hearings
Section 2.18 Publication of Resolutions and Ordinances

ARTICLE II - THE MAYOR

Section 3.01 Term and Qualification
Section 3.02 Administrative Powers
Section 3.03 Ceremonial Duties
Section 3.04 Mayor's Right in Council
Section 3.05 Mayor's Veto Power
Section 3.06 Acting Mayor
Section 3.07 Vacancy
Section 3.08 Responsibility to the Electorate

ARTICLE IV - ADMINISTRATIVE OFFICERS, DEPARTMENTS, BOARDS AND COMMISSIONS

Section 4.01 City Departments
Section 4.02 Directors and Department Heads
Section 4.03 The Director of Public Safety and Service
Section 4.04 Powers and Duties of Director of Public Safety and Service
Section 4.05 The Director of Law
Section 4.06 The Director of Finance
Section 4.07 Public Utilities Board
Section 4.08 Commissions and Boards
Section 4.09 Creation of New Departments: Change of Duties

ARTICLE V - THE CIVIL SERVICE

Section 5.01 Civil Service Commission
Section 5.02 Civil Service Commission: Powers and Duties

ARTICLE VI - TAXATION AND FINANCE

Section 6.01 Effect of State Law
Section 6.02 Tax Limitation
Section 6.03 Contracts and Purchasing
Section 6.04 Salaries and Bonds
Section 6.05 Annual Audits and Uncollectible Accounts

ARTICLE VII - NOMINATION, ELECTIONS, QUALIFICATIONS, INITIATIVE, REFERENDUM AND RECALL

Section 7.01 General Provisions
Section 7.02 Definitions
Section 7.03 Qualifications of Elected Officers
Section 7.04 Voting Districts
Section 7.05 Elections for Nomination and Election of Officers
Section 7.06 Beginning of Term of Office
Section 7.07 Election and Appointment to Fill an Unexpired Term
Section 7.08 Initiative and Referendum
Section 7.09 Recall

ARTICLE VIII - GENERAL PROVISIONS

Section 8.01 Conflict of Interest
Section 8.02 Charter Amendment
Section 8.03 Charter Review
Section 8.04 Separability
Section 8.05 Interpretation

ARTICLE IX - TRANSITION

Section 9.01 Officers and Employees
Section 9.02 Council Wards
Section 9.03 Transition of Departments, Offices and Agencies
Section 9.04 Pending Matters
Section 9.05 Existing Laws


~PREAMBLE~

We, the people of Orrville, in the County of Wayne and State of Ohio, in order to secure for our City and for ourselves and our children the advantages of self government conferred by the home rule provisions of the Ohio Constitution, do hereby adopt this Charter.


Article I

Incorporation and Powers

Section 1.01 - Incorporation

The present municipality, as its limits are now, or may hereafter be established in the manner authorized by the laws of Ohio, shall be and continue to be a municipal corporation of the State of Ohio in perpetuity, under the name of the City of Orrville.

Section 1.02 - Powers of the City

The City shall have all powers possible for a city to have under the Constitution and laws of the State of Ohio as fully and completely as though they were specifically enumerated in the Charter.

Section 1.03 - Manner of Exercise of Powers

All such powers shall be exercised in the manner prescribed in this Charter, or if not prescribed herein, in such manner as shall be provided by ordinance of the Council, and when not prescribed in this Charter or provided by ordinance of council, then such powers shall be exercised in the manner provided by the general laws of the State of Ohio until the Council shall provide a different manner of exercising such powers.

Section 1.04 - Construction

The powers of the City under this Charter shall be construed liberally in favor of the City, and the specific mention of particular powers in the Charter shall not be construed as limiting in any way the general power stated in this article.

Section 1.05 - Intergovernmental Relations

The City may exercise any of its powers or perform any of its functions and may participate in the financing thereof, jointly or in cooperation, by contract or otherwise, with any one or more states or civil divisions or agencies thereof, or the United States or any agency thereof.


Article II

Council

Section 2.01 - Powers

The legislative power of the City shall be vested in the Council.

Section 2.02 - Membership and Term

Council shall be composed of seven members, one to be nominated and elected from each of the four wards, and three to be nominated and elected at large. Except for the first election under this Charter, all Council members shall be elected for a term of four years.

At the first election under this Charter held in November 1977, the Council members from wards one and three shall be elected for a term of two years, and the Council members from wards two and four shall be elected for a term of four years. Of the three at-large members elected, the two receiving the greatest number of votes shall serve a term of four years; the remaining one shall serve a term of two years.

Section 2.03 - Removal

Council shall be the sole and final judge of the election and qualification of its members. Any member of Council who shall cease to possess or who violates any of the qualifications in the Charter shall forfeit his office. Failure of any member of Council to maintain said qualifications shall not render void or ineffective any action of the Council taken during the time he was not qualified.

Council may remove any member for gross misconduct, or malfeasance, misfeasance or nonfeasance in office; or for conviction while in office of a crime involving moral turpitude; or if adjudicated legally incompetent; or for a violation of his oath of office; or persistent failure to abide by the rules of Council; or absence without justifiable excuse from four consecutive regular meetings of Council, or from nine regular meetings in one year excused or not. However, such expulsion shall not take place without the concurrence of two-thirds of the remaining members of Council, nor until the accused member shall have been notified in writing of the charge against him at least fifteen days in advance of a public hearing upon such charge, and at which time he or his counsel shall be given an opportunity to be heard, present evidence, and examine, under oath, any witness appearing in support of such charge.

Section 2.04 - Council as a Continuing Body

The Council shall be a continuing body and proceedings which have been lawfully begun by one Council can be prosecuted by succeeding Councils until completed and made effective.

Section 2.05 - President of Council

The President of Council shall be elected at large for a term of four years, to run concurrently with the terms of the Mayor as specified in Section 3.01. He shall preside at all meetings of Council, but shall have no vote, except in the case of a tie. When the Mayor is absent from the City or unable to perform his duties, the President of Council shall become Acting Mayor and shall have the same powers and perform the same duties as the Mayor. He shall perform such duties as presiding officer as may be imposed upon him by the Council. He shall be an ex-officio member of all committees created by Council; he shall be notified by the committee chairmen of all meetings of said committees and entitled to attend the same.

Section 2.06 - Organization

Within the first eight days of January following each regular municipal election, the Council shall organize itself and appoint a Clerk of Council and other necessary employees of Council, and set their duties, bonds and compensation, and appoint from its membership a President pro tempore who, without relinquishing his right to vote on all matters coming before Council, shall perform the duties of the President of Council during his absence from any meeting of Council and while the President of Council is absent from the City or is temporarily unable for any cause to perform his duties. Council shall adopt its own rules, regulations, and bylaws except as otherwise provided in this Charter.

Section 2.07 - Quorum

A majority of the members elected or appointed to Council shall constitute a quorum for the transaction of business at any meeting of Council, but a lesser number may adjourn the meeting from time to time and compel the attendance of absent members in such manner and under such penalties as Council may prescribe. The passage of ordinances and resolutions shall require the affirmative vote of a majority of those elected or appointed to Council, unless a larger number is specified in this Charter or by the laws of the State of Ohio.

Section 2.08 - Journal

The Clerk of Council shall keep a journal of the proceedings of the Council. Voting upon any ordinance or resolution or motion shall be by roll call, and the vote of each member shall be entered upon the journal. The journal shall be open for public inspection at all reasonable times.

Section 2.09 - Meetings

The Council shall hold regular meetings at least twice a month, the time of which shall be prescribed by ordinance. Council may dispense with regular meetings for not more than one month each year. All meetings shall be held in the Council Chambers, except for exceptional circumstances when the President of Council may designate another location, and give public notice by newspaper publication, when practical, or by posting the change of location at the Council Chambers.

Special meetings may be called by a majority vote of Council taken at any regular or special meeting; or shall be called by the Clerk of Council upon request of the Mayor, President of Council, or any three members of Council. Any such vote or request shall state the time and subject or subjects to be considered at the meeting and no action shall be taken on any other matters. Twenty-four hours written notice of the time and date of special meetings called by request of the Mayor, President of Council, or three Council members shall be given to each member of Council, the President of Council, and the Mayor either personally or by delivering a copy thereof to his usual place of residence. Service of such notice may be waived by an instrument in writing signed prior to the time of such meeting, and the Mayor, President of Council, and any member of Council shall be deemed conclusively to have waived such notice by attendance at such meeting.

In adopting its own rules and regulations, Council shall provide for an opportunity during the meeting wherein any group or person attending any regular or special meeting shall be permitted to speak on any matter, past or current, pertinent to municipal affairs.

All meetings of the Council shall be open to the public except the portions thereof devoted to the discussion of threatened or actual litigation, personnel matters, and the sale and acquisition of land.

Section 2.10 - Council Relationship to Administrative Officers

Neither Council, nor its committees, shall in any manner take part in the discipline of, nor give orders to, any subordinates and employees in the administrative service of the municipality responsible to the Mayor, but must deal directly with the Mayor or Executive Officers. Council may inquire into the conduct of any office or department or any of the affairs of the City.

Section 2.11 - Legislative Procedure

All legislative action of Council shall be by ordinance or resolution, introduced in written or printed form. No ordinance shall contain more than one subject which shall be clearly expressed in its title. Ordinances involving general appropriations, however, may contain the various subjects and accounts for which moneys are to be appropriated. Any member of Council may introduce legislation at any regular or special meeting of Council.

No resolution or ordinance shall be revised or amended unless the resolution or ordinance superseding it contains the entire resolution or ordinance so revised or amended, or the section or sections so revised or amended, and, having been revised or amended, the original resolution or ordinance, or section or sections, shall be repealed.

Section 2.12 - Reading Requirements

Resolutions and ordinances shall be read before passage in the manner and for the number of times required by general law, except that ordinances and resolutions shall be deemed to have been read if a written or printed copy of the ordinance or resolution shall have been furnished to each member of Council prior to the meeting at which it is introduced and if the title thereof is fully read. However, such ordinance or resolution shall be read in full at the request of a majority of the members present. Council may suspend the rules requiring more than a single reading by the affirmative vote of three-fourths of all of its members.

Section 2.13 - Emergency Ordinances

When necessary for the preservation of the public peace, health, and welfare or safety, the Council, by an affirmative vote of two-thirds of the members, may adopt an emergency ordinance or resolution which shall set forth and define the specific facts necessitating the emergency. Such emergency ordinances or resolutions shall take effect at the time indicated therein. Emergency ordinances or resolutions shall be published as other ordinances or resolutions after passage.

Section 2.14 - Actions Not Permitted as Emergencies

No ordinance or resolution authorizing the surrender or joint exercise of its powers; or in establishing new positions in the classified or unclassified service of the City; or regulating the rate charged by any public utility; or in the adoption, amendment or repeal of any ordinance relating to zoning or to the use and occupancy of land or structures thereon; or in the changing of any ward boundaries; or in authorizing any changes in the boundaries of the municipality or the sale of the electric, waterworks or waste water treatment plants or the distribution and collection systems appurtenant thereto shall be adopted as an emergency measure.

Section 2.15 - Public Notice Before Adoption

No ordinance or resolution authorizing the surrender or joint exercise of any of its powers; or in the granting of any franchise; or in establishing new positions in the classified or unclassified service of the City; or regulating the rate charged by any public utility; or in the adoption, amendment or repeal of any ordinance relating to the use and occupancy of land or structures thereon; or in the authorization of any change in the boundaries of the municipality, shall be adopted unless public notice is given in a newspaper of general circulation with the City at least seven (7) days before adoption by Council. Such public notice shall be given by publishing the title, a summary, or the full text of the ordinance or resolution, as may be authorized by Council, and shall contain a statement that a copy of said ordinance or resolution is available for public inspection in the office of the Clerk of Council.

Section 2.16 - Effective Date of Ordinances and Resolutions

Each resolution or ordinance providing for the appropriation of money; or establishing new positions in the classified or unclassified service of the City; or for the annual tax levy; or for improvements petitioned for by the owners of a majority of the adjacent property to be benefitted and specially assessed therefor, and any emergency ordinance necessary for the immediate preservation of public peace, health, welfare, or safety, shall take effect, unless a later date be specified therein, upon its approval by the Mayor, or upon its passage after veto by the Mayor, as the case may be.

No other resolution or ordinance shall become effective until thirty days after (1) its approval by the Mayor, or (2) the expiration of the time within which it may be vetoed by the Mayor, or (3) its passage after veto by the Mayor, as the case may be.

Section 2.17 - Public Hearings

Those actions of Council which require public hearings under the general laws of Ohio shall require public hearings under this Charter.

Section 2.18 - Publication of Resolutions and Ordinances

Within ten days of passage, all resolutions and ordinances required by general laws to be published shall be published once in a newspaper of general circulation in the City by number and title; or by number, title and summary; or in full, as may be authorized by Council. Such publications shall announce that a copy of the resolution or ordinance is available for public inspection at the office of the Clerk of Council.


Article III

The Mayor

Section 3.01 - Term and Qualification

The Mayor shall be elected for a four (4) year term, to begin on the first of January next following his election.

The Mayor shall be a qualified elector of the municipality, and shall have been, immediately prior to the date of filing his declaration of candidacy, a continuous resident of the municipality or any territory annexed thereto, for one (1) year. During his term of office, he shall continue to be a resident and qualified elector. If the Mayor shall cease to possess any of the qualifications for such office, he shall forthwith forfeit his office.

Section 3.02 - Administrative Powers

The Mayor shall exercise supervision and control of all departments and divisions of the City. He shall be the chief conservator of the peace within the City, and shall see that all laws, ordinances and resolutions are faithfully obeyed and enforced. He shall have the power: (1) to appoint, promote, transfer, reduce or remove any officer or employee or appointee of the City, but such power shall be subject to the other provisions of this Charter, or to the laws of the State of Ohio where it is beyond the competence of this Charter to provide; (2) to initiate departmental reorganization in accordance with Section 4.09 of this Charter; (3) to exercise those judicial powers granted to mayors under the general laws of Ohio; (4) to perform other powers and duties granted by ordinance or resolution.

Section 3.03 - Ceremonial Duties

The Mayor shall be recognized as the official and ceremonial head of the government by the Governor for military purposes and by the courts for the purpose of serving civil processes.

Section 3.04 - Mayor's Right in Council

The Mayor shall attend Council meetings, but shall have no vote therein. He shall have the right to recommend and introduce legislation and to take part in the discussion of all matters coming before Council.

Section 3.05 - Mayor's Veto Power

Every ordinance or resolution of a general or permanent nature shall be signed by the President of Council, or, in his absence, by the President pro tempore and shall be presented forthwith to the Mayor by the Clerk of Council. If the Mayor approves such ordinance or resolution, he shall sign and return it, but if he does not approve it, he shall return it with a statement of his objections within ten (10) days to the Council, who shall enter his objections on its journal. If it is not returned within ten (10) days after submission to the Mayor, it shall become effective as provided in Section 2.16 of this Chapter.

The Council may then reconsider the vote on the passage of such legislation not later than at its next regular meeting. If, on reconsideration, it is approved by two-thirds of the members of Council, it shall become effective as provided in Section 2.16 of this Charter.

The Mayor may disapprove any item or items of an ordinance making an appropriation of money, and the item or items so disapproved shall be void unless repassed by Council in the manner herein prescribed.

Section 3.06 - Acting Mayor

During such period when the Mayor is absent from the City, or is otherwise not accessible, or it temporarily unable for any cause to perform his duties, the President of Council shall be the Acting Mayor, but he shall not thereby cease to be President of Council.

Section 3.07 - Vacancy

In the event of the death, resignation, or recall from office of the Mayor, or his ceasing to qualify for such office, the President Of Council shall succeed to the office of Mayor to serve the unexpired term and until a successor is elected and qualified. The office of President of Council shall become vacant and shall be filled as provided in Section 7.07 of this Charter.

Section 3.08 - Responsibility to the Electorate

The Mayor is responsible to the electorate for the proper administration of the City by virtue of the power of appointment and the power of removal of the administrative officers as provided for by this Charter.

The Mayor shall hold not less than one (1) public meeting per calendar year. At such time, the Mayor and the Directors and Department Heads shall meet with the public for a discussion of the affairs of the City.


Article IV

Administrative Officers, Departments,
Boards and Commissions

Section 4.01 - City Departments

Unless modified as provided in Section 4.09 of this Charter, or by the creation by ordinance of new agencies, the administrative branch of the City shall consist of the following departments: Law, Finance, Public Utilities, and Public Safety and Service. Each department shall consist of the director thereof and such assistants as Council shall by ordinance provide.

Section 4.02 - Directors and Department Heads

All directors and director heads shall have control and supervision over employees and the work of their departments.

Every director and department head shall be a resident of the City of Orrville, or shall become a resident within a reasonable time after his appointment and shall remain a resident throughout his tenure.

Section 4.03 - The Director of Public Safety and Service

The Director of Public Safety and Service shall be appointed by the Mayor solely on the basis of his executive and administrative qualifications in the profession of public management, as judged by the adequacy of his technical training and his successful experience in public, commercial or industrial administration.

Section 4.04 - Powers and Duties of the Director of Public Safety and Service

The Director of Public Safety and Service shall be responsible to the Mayor for the general supervision and proper operation of the Departments of Police, Fire, and Streets, Parks, and Cemeteries.

He shall serve as purchasing agent for all departments under his supervision or control, and shall be a member of the Board of Control, as provided for in Section 6.03 of this Charter.

He shall perform such other administrative duties as may be specified in this Charter, or required of him by the Mayor.

Section 4.05 - The Director of Law

The Director of Law shall be appointed by the Mayor, with the approval of Council. He shall be qualified to practice law in the State of Ohio. He shall serve as legal counsel to the administration and legislative branches of the City.

Section 4.06 - The Director of Finance

The Director of Finance shall be appointed by the Mayor, with the approval of Council on the basis of his competence as demonstrated by experience, education, or both. The Mayor may also designate an officer or employee of the City, who, during the absence or disability of, or during a vacancy in the office of, the Director of Finance, shall exercise the powers and discharge the duties and functions of the Director of Finance under the title of Acting Director of Finance. The Director of Finance shall have knowledge of municipal accounting and taxation, and shall have had experience in budgeting and financial control. He shall have charge of the administration of the financial affairs of the City under the direction of the Mayor, and to that end, he shall have authority and shall be required to:

  1. Prepare and submit the current income and expense estimates for the budget as directed by the Mayor.
  2. Supervise and be responsible for the disbursement of all monies, and control all expenditures so that appropriations are not exceeded.
  3. Maintain a general accounting system for the City government; keep accounts for and exercise budgetary control over each office, department and agency; keep separate appropriations accounts each of which shall show the amount of the appropriation, the encumbrances thereon, the amounts expended therefrom, and the unencumbered balance therein; require reports of receipts and disbursements from each receiving and disbursing agency of the City government at such intervals as he may deem expedient and in such form as he shall require.
  4. Submit to the Mayor upon request, but not less often than monthly, a statement of receipts and disbursements and account balances in sufficient detail to show the financial condition of the City.
  5. Prepare for the Mayor, as of the end of each fiscal year, a complete financial statement and report.
  6. Receive and record all fees and revenues due the City.
  7. Have control of all public funds belonging to or under control of the City, or any office, department or agency of the City government, and deposit said funds in such depositories as may be designated by resolution of the Council.
  8. Have control of all investments and invested funds of the City government, or in possession of such government in a fiduciary capacity; make all investments on behalf of the City after consultation with the Mayor and Director of Law; and have the safekeeping of all bonds and notes of the City and the receipt and delivery of City bonds and notes for transfer, registration or exchange.
  9. Attend, in person or by his authorized delegate, all regular Council and Public Utilities Board meetings.
  10. Perform such other services, not inconsistent with this Charter, as may be required by either the Mayor or the Council.

Section 4.07 - Public Utilities Board

(a) Appointment, Qualifications, Term of Office --- The Public Utilities Board shall consist of five members, appointed by the Mayor with the approval of Council. Members shall be residents of the City of Orrville, except that not more than one member may be a resident of any area outside the City, which is served by one or more of the utilities under the control of the Board, who is a paying user of one or more of such utilities. No member of the Board shall hold any other office or employment with the City. The terms of office of members of the Board shall be five years, and no member shall serve for more than three terms in succession.

(b) Officers and Meetings --- The Public Utilities Board shall elect annually from among its members, at the first meeting of the Board in January, a President who shall preside at all meetings of the Board, and a Vice President, who shall preside in the absence of the President. The Board shall hold regular meetings at least twice a month at a designated time and place. The Board may dispense with regular meetings for not more than one month each year. The board shall provide, in its rules and regulations, procedures for calling special meetings. All meetings of the Board shall be open to the public except the portions thereof devoted to actual or threatened litigation, personnel matters and matters involving the sale and acquisition of land.

(c) Powers and Duties --- The Public Utilities Board shall be responsible for the operation and maintenance of, and any improvements or expansions of, the electric, water, and sanitary sewer utilities of the City, and may adopt such rules and regulations, not inconsistent with this Charter, as the Board shall deem necessary for the conduct of its affairs and for the management and operation of the utilities, and for the supervision of the officers and employees of the City under its control. The Board shall recommend rates to be charged for the use and consumption of the products and services of such utilities as shall be sufficient at all times to provide for the economical and efficient operation and management of such utilities, and for the payment of debt service charges on notes or bonds of the City issued for the improvement or expansion of any of such utilities. Any recommended adjustment in such utility rates shall be submitted to the Council at a regular meeting for its review and approval or disapproval, which shall be by administrative action taken not sooner than at the next regular meeting, and upon approval, such adjustment in rates shall become effective immediately. If the Council fails to approve or disapprove such recommended rates not later than the fifth regular meeting of the Council following the receipt of such recommendation from the Public Utilities Board, such recommended rates shall become effective immediately following such fifth meeting.

(d) Director of Utilities --- The Public Utilities Board shall appoint a Director of Utilities, who shall be the managing head of the Department of Public Utilities, and who shall be responsible to the Board for the proper operation and maintenance of the utilities which are under the control of the Board, and, with the approval of the Board, for the selection, promotion, demotion, discipline and removal of the other officers and employees of the Department of Public Utilities.

Section 4.08 - Commissions and Boards

Commissions and Boards in existence at the time this Charter goes into effect, and not abolished herein, shall continue as provided in the statutes or ordinances created and governing such Boards and Commissions, unless modified in accordance with this Charter.

Section 4.09 - Creation of New Departments: Change of Duties

Any office, department, commission, board or agency may be created, changed or abolished by ordinance, other than the offices, departments, commissions, boards and agencies established by this Charter. Additional duties or functions may be assigned by ordinance to offices, departments, commissions, boards and agencies established by this Charter, but may not discontinue or assign to any other office, department, commission, board or agency any function or duty assigned by this Charter to a particular office, department, commission, board or agency.


Article V

The Civil Service

Section 5.01 - Civil Service Commission

A. There is hereby created and established a Civil Service Commission, which shall consist of three members, appointed by the Mayor for terms of six years each, provided that the persons holding the office of member of the Civil Service Commission at the time this Charter takes effect shall continue to serve in that office for the remainder of their terms, but shall exercise the powers, duties and functions as provided in this Charter. Not more than two members shall be of the same political party.

B. All compensated positions in the service of the City shall be in the classified service, and shall be appointed pursuant to competitive examinations, except the following, which shall comprise the unclassified service of the City:

  1. Members of Council, including the President of Council.
  2. All clerical employees of the Council.
  3. The Mayor.
  4. Directors, Assistant Directors, Managers and Superintendents except those persons in superintendent positions which were in the classified service of the City on November 3, 1981.
  5. Members of Boards and Commissions established by this Charter or by ordinance of Council.
  6. Volunteer members of the Department of Fire and members of the auxiliary police unit and dispatchers within the Department of Police.
  7. The Secretary of each Board and Commission established by this Charter or by ordinance, provided that if such Secretary holds other employment within the classified service of the municipality, this Section shall not exempt such person from the requirement of competitive examination to hold such other employment.
  8. Persons of exceptional professional or scientific qualifications employed as consultants.
  9. Unskilled laborers, as defined and authorized by the Civil Service Commission, and temporary employees who are not employed for more than one hundred eighty (180) continuous days or for more than one hundred eighty (180) days in one (1) year.
  10. One personal secretary each to the Mayor, the Director of Finance, the Director of Safety and Service, and the Director of Utilities; provided, however, that it shall be necessary for such positions to have been created by Council.
  11. In the creation of new positions within the City government, the Council shall determine whether such office or position is to be in the classified or unclassified service.

Section 5.02 - Civil Service Commission: Powers and Duties

The provisions of general law regarding selection, promotion, demotion, discipline and removal of employees within the classified service of the Municipality as provided by Section 5.01 of this Charter shall be applicable under this Charter, unless such provisions conflict with the provisions of this Charter, and provided that the Civil Service Commission shall have the power to adopt rules and regulations concerning the selection, promotion, demotion, discipline and removal of employees within the classified service of the municipality, which rules and regulations may modify, supplement or supersede the laws of the State of Ohio, and in the case of conflict shall prevail over such laws.


Articles VI

Taxation and Finance

Section 6.01 - Effect of State Law

Provisions of the Constitution and laws of Ohio, or amendments thereto, relating generally to budgets, appropriations, deposits, expenditures, debts, bonds, contracts and other fiscal matters of a municipality shall be applicable to the municipality, except as modified by, or necessarily inconsistent with, the provisions of this Charter.

Section 6.02 - Tax Limitation

The power of Council to levy taxes shall be subject to the limitations provided by the Constitution and laws of Ohio, and nothing contained in this Charter shall be construed to authorize the levy of any taxes in excess of said limitations without a vote of the people.

Section 6.03 - Contracts and Purchasing

The bidding and awarding of contracts shall be as established by ordinance. The General board of control consisting of the Mayor, Director of Safety and Service, and the Director of Finance shall have such responsibility regarding the consideration and awarding of contracts as Council authorizes by ordinance. The Public Utilities board of control consisting of the Mayor, Director of Utilities, and Director of Finance shall have such responsibility regarding the consideration and awarding of contracts in the Department of Public Utilities as Council authorizes by ordinance.

Section 6.04 - Salaries and Bonds

The Council shall have the power to fix the compensation of all elected and appointed officials, of all officers of the municipality, of each job classification, and the members of any board or commission of the municipality, whether elected or appointed. The Mayor, Director of Safety and Service, Director of Finance and other such officials or employees, or members of boards and commissions, as Council may require, shall give bond in such amount and with such surety as may be approved by Council. The premium for such bonds shall be paid by the municipality. The compensation of the elected officials shall be fixed at least thirty (30) days prior to the filing date of the nominating petitions for the terms beginning on the next succeeding first of January, and shall not be changed during the term of office. The Council may authorize the payment or reimbursement of expenses incurred by any officer, employee or member of any board or commission of the municipality for travel, membership in an association, or otherwise in the interest of the municipality.

Section 6.05 - Annual Audits and Uncollectible Accounts

Council may authorize a financial audit of any or all affairs of the City. This may be in addition to audits by the State of Ohio, and shall be made by a certified public accountant familiar with City audits, who is not in the employ of the City or financially interested in any transaction to be audited. Council may in addition cause other audits for any purpose to be made at any time.

The Council shall have the authority to establish by ordinance a procedure for removing from the books of the City uncollectible accounts.


Article VII

Nomination, Elections, Qualifications,
Initiative, Referendum and Recall

Section 7.01 - General Provisions

Except as otherwise provided in this Charter, the general laws of Ohio shall govern all matters pertaining to nominations of candidates, elections, assumption of office by elected officers, and conduct of elected officers of this municipality.

All citizens qualified by the Constitution and laws of the State of Ohio to vote in the City, and who satisfy the requirements for registration prescribed by law shall be qualified electors of the City within the meaning of this Charter.

Section 7.02 - Definitions

The term "elected officers" as used in this Article includes all persons, legislative and executive, who, by the terms of this Charter are required to be elected.

Section 7.03 - Qualifications of Elected Officers

Each elected officer of the City shall be an elector of the municipality, and shall have resided therein or in a territory annexed thereto for a period of at least one year prior to nomination for such office and shall continue to reside therein during the term of office.

Each Councilman elected to represent a ward shall be a continuous resident and qualified elector of the ward he represents, or territory annexed thereto, during his term of office.

Any elected officer who ceases to possess such qualifications shall forfeit his office.

Section 7.04 - Voting Districts

All matters pertaining to voting districts within the municipality, including their designation, number, apportionment and reapportionment, shall be governed by the general laws of the State of Ohio.

Section 7.05 - Elections for Nomination and Election of Officers

Primary and regular municipal elections shall be held at the times and in the manner prescribed by the general laws of Ohio, except as otherwise provided in this Charter.

Section 7.06 - Beginning of Term of Office

The term of office for each elected officer shall begin on January 1st following the regular municipal election at which he is elected.

Section 7.07 - Election and Appointment to Fill an Unexpired Term

If a vacancy occurs in the office of President of Council or member of Council at any time prior to the ninetieth day before any general election to occur when the unexpired term of such office is more than two years, an election to fill such vacancy shall be held at such general election. Candidates to fill such vacancy shall be nominated by petition in the manner provided by general law. The candidate receiving the largest number of votes at such election shall assume the office on the first day of January next following the election, and shall serve for the balance of the unexpired term. Within thirty days after any such vacancy occurs, Council shall by majority vote of the remaining members appoint a qualified person to fill the vacancy on a temporary basis until a successor is elected and qualified.

If a vacancy occurs in the office of the President of Council or member of Council at any time after the date specified in the preceding paragraph, the vacancy shall be filled for the remainder of the unexpired term by appointment of a qualified person by majority vote of the remaining members of Council within thirty days after the vacancy occurs.

In the event the Council fails to fill any vacancy within thirty days, as provided in this section, the Mayor shall make such appointment.

Section 7.08 - Initiative and Referendum

The powers of initiative and referendum are reserved to the people. Ordinances and other measures may be proposed by initiative petition and adopted by election, and ordinances and other measures adopted by the Council shall be subject to referendum, to the extent and manner now or hereafter provided by the general laws of Ohio, except as otherwise provided in this Charter.

Whoever seeks to propose an ordinance or measure by initiative petition or files a referendum petition against any ordinance or measure adopted by Council, shall, before circulating such petition, file a verified copy of the proposed ordinance or measure with the Director of Finance. Initiative and referendum petitions shall be filed with the Director of Finance, who shall certify such petitions within the time prescribed by the general laws of Ohio.

Section 7.09 - Recall

The power of recall of elected officials is reserved to the people. The procedure to be followed shall be as provided by Section 705.92 of the Revised Code of Ohio, as that Section may be amended or revised, or if that Section shall be repealed or the Section number shall be changed, then as provided by any other general law applicable to non-charter municipalities.


Article VIII

General Provisions

Section 8.01 - Conflict of Interest

No elected or appointed officer of the City shall hold any incompatible office. The general laws of Ohio pertaining to conflicts of interest of municipal officials shall be applicable to all officers of the City elected and appointed under this Charter.

Section 8.02 - Charter Amendment

This Charter may be amended at any time in the manner provided by the Constitution and laws of the State of Ohio.

Section 8.03 - Charter Review

A Charter review commission consisting of eleven members, two from each ward and three from the City at large, may be appointed at any time, and during the month of January 1981, and every tenth year thereafter shall be appointed by ordinance of the Council. Amendments to this Charter proposed by a Charter review commission shall be submitted to the electors in the manner prescribed in the Constitution and laws of the State of Ohio.

Section 8.04 - Separability

If any provisions of this Charter is held invalid, the other provisions of the Charter shall not be effected thereby. If the application of the Charter or any of its provisions to any person or circumstances is held invalid, the application of the Charter and its provisions to other persons or circumstances shall not be affected thereby.

Section 8.05 - Interpretation

The Article and Section headings herein have been inserted for convenience in reference and are not intended to define or limit the scope of, or otherwise affect, any provisions of this Charter.

Except as otherwise expressly provided in this Charter, or as the contest otherwise requires, the masculine term or pronoun includes the feminine, the singular term includes the plural, and the plural term includes the singular. The time within or by which any act or thing is required to be done by any of the provisions of this Charter shall be computed by excluding the first day and including the last day, except that when the last day falls on Saturday, Sunday, or a legal holiday, then the act may be done on the next succeeding day which is not a Saturday, Sunday, or legal holiday.


Article IX

Transition

Section 9.01 - Officers and Employees

This Charter shall take effect January 1, 1976. Each employee and official of the City at that time shall remain in his position, but shall thereafter be subject to the provisions of this Charter, with the following stipulations:

A. The office of President of Council shall become a four-year term, concurrent with that of the Mayor, in the term beginning January 1, 1980. Therefore, the term of this office shall be for two years (1976-77, 1978-79) until that time.

B. All Council seats shall be four-year terms in accordance with Section 2.02 of this Charter.

C. The offices of Auditor and Treasurer shall cease to exist as of the end of the day on December 31, 1976, at which time the Director of Finance, who shall have been appointed to replace these officers by the Mayor in accordance with Section 4.06 of this Charter, assumed his duties.

D. Until January 1, 1977, at which time Boards of Control provided for in Section 6.03 of this Charter assumed their duties, the existing Board of Control provided for by general law shall continue to carry out its duties as provided by general law.

E. The office of City Solicitor ceased to exist as of the end of the day on December 31, 1976, at which time the Director of Law, who has been appointed by the Mayor in accordance with Section 4.05 of this Charter, shall assume his duties.

F. The Public Utilities Board shall be expanded to a five-member Board by appointment in January 1976 of one person for a five year term, one person for a three-year term, and one person for a one-year term.

Section 9.02 - Council Wards

The four Council wards in existence at the time this Charter became effective shall continue in existence under this Charter, provided the ward boundaries may be changed in the manner provided for by the general laws of the State of Ohio.

Section 9.03 - Transition of Departments, Offices and Agencies

If a Department, Office or Agency is abolished by this Charter, the powers and duties given to it by law shall be transferred to the Department, Office or Agency designated in this Charter, or if the Charter makes no provisions, as designated by Council.

Section 9.04 - Pending Matters

All rights, claims, actions, orders, contracts, and legal or administrative proceedings shall continue, except as modified by the provisions of this Charter, and each case shall be maintained, carried on, or dealt with by the Department, Office or Agency appropriate under this Charter.

Section 9.05 - Existing Laws

All existing ordinances, resolutions and other acts of the City which are not inconsistent with this Charter shall remain in effect until amended or repealed by Council.


Original Charter Commission - 1975

Marion E. Tschiegg, Chairman
Charles L. Brest, Vice Chairman
Judith H. Kropf, Secretary
Ronald D. Amstutz
Vernon L. Curie
Forest D. Davault
Hratchouhi George
Lewis T. Hill
Charles D. Meenan
Gretta M. Peters
Donald L. Turner
Arthur E. Vernon
Paul D. Waltman
Robert E. Webner
Rodney L. Webner

Charter Review Commission - 1981

Diana L. McElwe
Serena A. Norris
Charles L. Winters
P. Dean Waltman
Judith H. Kropf
Marion E. Tschiegg
Kathleen Yonto (replaced by Al Beck)
Lewis T. Hill
Forest D. Davault
Russell J. Horst
Charles L. Brest


Charter Review Commission - 1991

Donald L. Miller
Beverly Wire
P. Dean Waltman
Vernon Curie
June Norris
Michael F. Hammer
Alfred J. Beck
Helen I. Wright
Donald D. Steiner
John W. Komer Jr.
Helen Meyers

Charter Review Commission - 2001

Phyllis Gype
Robert Batchlet
Tim McGuire
Tim Vierheller
James Klein
Don Steiner
Andrew Vernon
Bing Miller
Gary Coffing
James Sollenberger
Don Smart
Paul Schaffter
Monica Miyashita

Charter Review Commission 2011

George Koladin
John Morris
Diana Morris
Deborah Garrett
Dan Lorson
Dennis Steiner
Mike Musyt
David Shrader
Brad Strasbaugh
Tom Purdy
Andy Vernon