Akron City Council voted to place proposed charter changes on the November ballot regarding elections.
Council voted 10-3 in favor of the changes which would potentially hold all member elections at the same time as well as limit raises for Council and the Mayor to averages seen in the private sector.
Council President Marco Sommerville explains that by not having as many elections the city will save itself money.
"The citizens of Akron will be able to look at this issue and hopefully they understand the importance of saving money and the importance of everyone running at the same time, and we'll let the voters of this community make the decision,' Sommerville said.
Sommerville echoed that statement by saying elected city officials shouldn't get raises if the people they serve aren't getting them either.
City Council President Marco Sommerville by Aaron Coleman
Mayor Don Plusquellic said that by having this proposal out on the table, it would make the city government more efficient for all citizens, especially those who need it the most.
At-large Councilman Jeff Fusco said if the move was approved it would pay major dividends.
"We're estimating this could save anywhere from $100-200 thousand dollars," Fusco said. "$200,000 is practically two police officers, so this would be beneficial."
At Large Councilman Jeff Fusco by Aaron Coleman
Fusco explains that if the charter amendment is approved in November, all members of council along with the mayor will serve 4-year terms, thus cutting hundreds of thousands in election costs.
Other Ohio cities that currently have four year terms for their respective City Councils include Cleveland, Dayton, Toledo, Columbus, and Cincinnati. Summit County Council members also serve four year terms.
Currently Akron City Council ward members serve for two years, at-large representatives serve for four years, and the mayor's term is also four years.
One of the Council members who voted no on this issue was at-large Councilman Michael Williams.
"I think it's a bad piece and that people will reject this despite the fact that it's cloaked in cost savings and limiting Council and mayoral salaries," Williams said.
Sommerville pointed out that Williams voted for four year terms in 1990, but opposed it in 2000 and 2006.
At Large Councilman Mike Williams by Aaron Coleman
"I think it's important that ward council members remain accountable and continue to do their job, and the current terms keep them accountable on how they serve their ward."
Ward 2's Bruce Kilby says that while it would be easier to run every four years, it's not about personal agendas.
"This isn't about me or anyone else on Council or the Mayor, it's about good government," Kilby said.
Ward 2 Councilman Bruce Kilby by Aaron Coleman
The charter has been in place for nearly 100 years and people have already voted against this not too long ago."
Both Sommerville and Mayor Plusquellic pointed to cost-saving ventures in the past such as combining the Akron Health Department and Summit County Health Department as part of their reasoning for changing the charter.
Voters will have the final say on November 6, 2012.