Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Should We Eliminate District Residence Requirements for Commissioners?

The Morrisville Board of Commissioners is considering eliminating the current format of district representation and changing to an all “At-Large” mode for electing Board Members. The Board is looking for your input on this issue prior to their vote on July 22, 2008.

Currently, the Board consists of four district seats, who must reside in the district that they represent, two At-Large seats, who may reside anywhere within the town limits, and a Mayor, who is also At-Large. During an election, however, all residents can vote for all available seats on the Board, regardless of whether they are district-based or at-large. Also, regardless of any initial district designation, Commissioners are responsible for representing ALL of Morrisville. If this resolution is approved by the Board on July 22, district designations would be eliminated starting with the next election, and every Board member would be At-Large, meaning that they could live anywhere within Morrisville’s town limits.

Our next Town election is November 2009. The Mayor and three of the Commissioner seats are up for election. Under the proposed change, the three candidates receiving the greatest number of votes would be elected Commissioners. It is possible that all three elected may reside in the same district.

If unchanged for 2009, the current system would require that one Commissioner reside in District 2, one in District 4, and one be At-Large (reside anywhere in Morrisville). Under this setup there is a greater possibility that one or two candidates may run unopposed for their District.

Citizens can weigh in on this issue by emailing the Board at mayorandcommissioners@ci.morrisville.nc.us.

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