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November 1970

Time for Action - October Units
October Calendar
Holding Action
League to Present TV Documentary "We Elect" (Beverly Carter)
Voters Service (Pattye Layfield)
Issues and Candidates, 1970 (Claudia Patil)
New United Nations Booklet
Susie Orient Tells All - Who is who in the League
Charter "Into"
Help Wanted
Environmental Corner (Ann Hansen)
Flash! Press Release from the LWV of Hawaii (BOE)
Phosphates and Phosphorus in Automatic Dishwashing Detergents

Charter "Into"

The League supports the charter as a basically good document. For several years we have recognized that mandatory citizens' review of that charter should be done at least every 10 years----not the 16 years now prescribed. Eleven years have passed and here's our chance. In recent weeks LWV testimony to the City Council has supported Mary George's resolution to place on this November's ballot, a charter amendment that would call for the appointment of a citizens' charter commission by March 1, 1971 and every 10 years thereafter. The League's magic number of 10 and immediate review were the goals. The resolution otherwise left the charter intact---that is 9 commission members to be appointed by the Mayor and approved by the Council. The commission's proposals would have been put before the voters whenever their study was finished---the timing probably would have resulted in a special election. Our testimony then centered on the following amendments to her resolution:

1. to appoint a 13-member charter commission, with 6 members appointed by the Council Chairman Fold approved by the Council, 6 members appointed by the Mayor, and 1 member appointed by the Mayor with Council approval. The League supported the 9-member commission because there simply hasn't been a good reason for changing this provision thought out by the previous chanter commission and approved by the voters. The League was influential in assuring a Commission with an odd number of members. The original amendment called for an even-numbered commission. The League pointed out the problems of getting agreement from such a body.

2. to appoint the commission by July 1, 1971 and to submit the proposed amendments to the voters at a general election. The arguments against special elections--too expensive, and people don't have much interest. Reason for our opposition: too much delay between proposal and voting; nothing wrong with special elections---they at least attract the people who are interested and informed.

The Council unanimously passed the amended resolution. Despite our objections to the changes before their adoption, the League is ready to run with the substance of the resolution. Let's appoint a citizens' charter commission now and get going on better government for Honolulu. The new charter commission can restudy the issues of this amendment, such as special vs. general elections for charter amendments and composition of charter commissions,

Vote "yes" for the charter amendment on November 2 and influence others to do the same. In order to pass, an amendment must receive the majority of all those voting in the election. Therefore an abstention has the same effect as a vote against the issue.

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