But still the belief in the possibility of change taking place is what is of paramount importance to me.
Now that a new council has been elected with the forceful face of change plastered all over the face of city hall, Detroit cannot rest. A new era is beginning.
This new legislative body must begin work in earnest right away, even though it will be formally seated in less than three months.
The new members must begin assigning and assembling their teams to work on the myriad of crucial issues facing Detroit.
Patience has run out for the days when council members hardly did any research and voted on proposals without understanding the policy implications of what they were voting on.
The new council members I recommended a week ago on a radio program each ought to have a laptop on the council table during sessions. Not to be technologically fancy, but to make use of the computer to dig deeper on matters being tabled before this august body.
The new charter commission must demonstrate a great sense of professionalism and independence in the execution of their duties. Each member of the commission must study the Michigan Constitution and its application to the matters Detroit is confronting.
These new members must be thinkers to help Detroit chart its way out of the rubble of political paralysis to a new level of engagement.
Despite the fact that the recommendations of the charter commission will be subject to a referendum, the onus is still on the members to carefully study the issues that this city is faced with.
The charter commission, consisting of Freman Hendrix, Teola Hunter, Ken Coleman, Jenice Mitchell Ford, Reggie Reg Davis, Rosemary C. Robinson, Ken Harris, John Johnson and Cara J. Blount, sits at the crucible of history because the next Detroit City Charter will either embody the ideas that will make this city work or be hindered from moving forward.
That is why residents and everyone who has a stake in this city’s progress must monitor the commission to ensure that members are demonstrating their civic duty.
But we in the media cannot leave the job to the people alone. We have a deep obligation to do our part to make the charter commission accountable to the needs of the people who elected them into office.
We cannot allow Detroit this time around to make a wrong turn on the highway of progress, especially after voters made it clear that they want change, that the status quo will no longer do.
We have an obligation to inform and empower people with relevant information that allows them to see through the prism of the charter commission.
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