MuskogeePhoenix.com, Muskogee, OK

March 22, 2013

Streamlining government smart move


— Muskogee city councilors made the right move when they decided to review 41 boards, commissions or authorities for elimination or consolidation.

The reason for the review comes because those entities have approximately 80 to 85 vacancies.

Former Mayor John Tyler Hammons told the Public Works Committee — made up of the nine city councilors — that it was often “frustrating” trying to raise a committee.

“And some of the boards have lost their purposes over time,” Hammons said. “Their main reason for existence has gone away.”

If that’s true — and we suspect the review of those entities will prove Hammons’ point — the review is long overdue.

Muskogee needs the help of its citizens to help govern the city.

But clearly, there are too many entities if there are 80 to 85 vacancies and many people must serve longer than their appointment.

We hope many citizens will step up and fill the remaining vacancies after the council review.

Serving on one of these entities is a great way to learn city government.

Anyone wishing to run for Council or mayor should consider service good preparation.

Under review

Here is a list of 41 Muskogee boards, commissions or authorities that may come under review to  be consolidated or eliminated:

• Airport Board

• Board of Adjustment

• Building & Housing Board of Adjustment & Appeals

• Canine Control Board

• (Chamber of Commerce) Committee for Convention and Tourism

• Charter Review Committee

• Civic Center Advisory Council

• Civil Service Commission

• Eastern Oklahoma Development District

• Eastern Oklahoma District Library System Board

• Electrical Examining & Appeals Board

• Finance Committee

• Firefighters Pension & Retirement Board

• Health Plan Grantor Trust (employee self-insured)

• Historic Preservation Commission

• Housing Authority

• Muskogee County Council of Youth Services (MCCOYS)

• Mechanical Examining and Appeals Board

• Merit System Board

• Muskogee City-County Enhanced 9-1-1 Trust Authority

• Muskogee City-County Port Authority

• Muskogee County Public Transit Authority

• Muskogee Foundation Board

• Muskogee Industrial Trust

• Muskogee Medical Center Authority

• Muskogee Municipal Authority

• Muskogee Public Library Board

• Parking Authority

• Parks and Recreation Board

• Planning and Zoning Commission

• Plumbing & Appeals Board

• Public Nuisance Appeals Board

• Public Works Committee

• Purchasing Committee

• Retirement Committee (employees)

• Street Improvement Advisory Commission

• Tree Board

• Urban Renewal Authority

• War Memorial Trust Authority

• Wellness Initiative Coalition

Source: www.cityofmuskogee.com.