City Charter Voter Information
On the Nov. 3, 2020 general election ballot, there will be four items that directly impact New Smyrna Beach. Three involve electing a mayor and commissioners for Zones 3 & 4. The other is a referendum on whether to amend our City Charter, the foundational document that defines the organization, powers, functions, and essential procedures of city government. Put another way, the City Charter is to New Smyrna Beach as the Constitution is to the United States.
First, a little history: Founded in 1768, New Smyrna Beach was officially incorporated as a city in 1947. Since then, our City Charter has evolved gradually by amendment. In 2019, the City Commission formed a Charter Review Committee made up of 10 citizens to review and recommend updates to the City Charter for the modern era. Guided by the Florida Institute of Government at the University of Central Florida, they hosted nine public meetings from Nov. 7, 2019 through May 14, 2020 before producing a final report and recommendations, which were then reviewed by the City Commission and distilled into this single ballot question:
CHARTER AMENDMENT ADOPTING REVISED CHARTER FOR THE CITY OF NEW SMYRNA BEACH
Shall the City of New Smyrna Beach adopt a revised Charter incorporating a preamble, reorganizing existing language, removing obsolete language, revising election procedures, revising qualifications and duties of members of the City Commission and Charter officers, adopting provisions related to sustainability, including limitations on the transfer of ownership or lease of certain lands, establishing requirements for financial management, providing for citizen participation, including an initiative and referendum process, and requiring regular reviews of the Charter?
- YES for Approval ___
- NO against Approval ___
- Current City Charter
- Charter Review Committee Final Report & Recommendations (8 pages)
- Ordinance No. 77-20 (35 pages) depicting both current and proposed City Charter text
- City Attorney Staff Report (4 pages) summarizing the review process