Carey Davis

San Bernardino City Clerk Gigi Hanna swears in Mayor Carey Davis, as his wife Johnetta stands near during the inauguration ceremony Monday. (John Valenzuela — Staff photographer)

By Ryan Hagen, The Sun
Posted: 03/04/14, 2:36 PM PST | Updated: 1 min ago

SAN BERNARDINO >> Mayor Carey Davis didn’t waste any time moving toward charter reform on his first day in office — but he didn’t rush, either.

The City Council was set to approve creation of a committee to recommend charter changes, which “the office of mayor has indicated (as) a priority,” according to documents provided along with the agenda of Monday’s meeting. The intention would then be for the City Council to choose whether to put those suggested changes on the November ballot.

Davis spoke only briefly about the subject Monday.

“After conferring with the city attorney it’s clear that the language of the resolution needs some work,” Davis said, “and in conferring we have discovered that the title needs to be changed from a citizens’ commission to a citizens’ committee.”

Under state law, a commission must be formed by the voters, said Senior Assistant Attorney Jolena Grider.

A vote setting up the committee is now set for a special meeting Tuesday at 5 p.m. at City Hall.

Some residents and observers of the city have long pushed charter reform, saying certain provisions of the “antiquated” document — such as the section determining how police and firefighter pay is set and making certain positions elected rather than appointed — hold back the city.

Others have passionately defended the 46-page charter, saying suggested changes are politically motivated and amount, for instance, to an attempt to lower public safety pay to a level that wouldn’t attract quality employees.

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