Home Rule? Home Rule is simply a different form of government. In 1958, a constitutional amendment authorized counties to adopt “Home Rule” charters, giving voters the power to adopt and amend their own county government organization. It’s a type of government that gives counties more say regarding what works best for their community rather than what fits other areas of Oregon.
Who wrote the charter? Everyone agrees, it was, for the most part, copied and pasted from the Clatsop County Home Rule Charter. Knowing who wrote the charter won’t change the charter. It is what it is, simply a constitutional form of government. The current form of government in Douglas County is statutory law, which means everything needs to go through the state and the Legislature.
Each charter is unique to the county it serves. “Home Rule” is simply what the term implies – voters in counties decide how to rule themselves. No two “homes” are exactly alike.
The group opposed to the charter says to “follow the money to the extreme environmentalists.” Anyone can go to the Orestar website to see the “extreme” money. There is some “extreme” money being thrown at the Home Rule Charter, but it is from the people trying to defeat it.
Doug Robertson, who is on the county payroll and has been for at least the last two years and is also being paid by the PAC created to defeat the Home Rule Charter, is going around the county spreading misinformation, half-truths or all-out lies, trying to scare people into voting against this measure. My question is “why?” This Home Rule Charter, as with all nine other Home Rule Charters, has absolutely nothing to do with timber or the timber industry. It has nothing to do with Second Amendment rights (also in the Constitution).
I am sure none of the $5,000 to $10,000 donors to the PAC to defeat the Home Rule Charter would hire a mechanic to run their multimillion/billion-dollar companies. Why shouldn’t Douglas County have a professional running our multimillion-dollar government?
The things that would change under the Douglas County Home Rule Charter: County government would go from three full-salaried-plus-medical-and-PERS commissioners to five part-time/volunteer commissioners, paid no more than $500 per month. No medical. No PERS. County would be split into five separate districts, separated evenly by voter population. Establishes one paid county administrator that would actually have an education in budget and finance, hired by and accountable to, the elected commissioners and citizens. Voter approved term limits for the commissioners. It would increase the minimum age of the sheriff from 21 to 25.
What are the people against this charter really afraid of? Where was all the time, money and effort that is going into defeating the Home Rule Charter when it came to keeping the services available to the people of Douglas County, who are paying all the taxes? Me thinks they protest too much. Extreme?