Support of the clerk’s office helps protect DeKalb elections

The Daily Chronicle published a story last week about the DeKalb city clerk’s absenteeism at city council meetings. Sasha Cohen’s attendance record since taking office is running about 50%, and the city council is whining about it. Unfortunately, the article is missing context, such as the double standards and hostile environment at play. While I’m…

DeKalb planning to ignore existing policies to sideline the clerk’s office once again

City council will take up a proposal tomorrow to appoint the executive assistant as permanent recorder of the meeting minutes. They can’t bar the city clerk from attending meetings and taking minutes, so here’s what they’ve come up with: The follow-on ordinance…will not prevent the Clerk from taking minutes and presenting them, but the Council…

DeKalb city council voted to allow me to participate remotely in order to exclude you

As DeKalb’s city clerk, I’ve been participating in council meetings via teleconferencing since April. Then, during the July 13 committee-of-the-whole meeting, the city council, somewhat bizarrely, took a vote to allow me to teleconference. This post will explain why. Here’s the clip of part of the mayor’s introduction to the topic. (The first 4-1/2 minutes…

Taking away the city clerk’s role in checks and balances

Jumping off my last post and recent discussion of it, I want to share a little more of the context in which I currently attempt to function as city clerk in DeKalb. This time last year, I signed and sealed some contracts and all plats, ordinances, resolutions, and licenses. Hundreds of documents crossed my desk…

As DeKalb city clerk, I feel like a punching bag

***Update: Find discussion and comments in our Facebook group .*** When I read the other day the Daily Chronicle is still calling it a “rift” in describing what’s going on between the city manager’s office and me as city clerk, I realized I have to say more than I have before. It’s no longer a…

DeKalb can become “business friendly” when this city manager is gone

DeKalb city council had another goal-setting session Tuesday evening. It was a good session, as was last month’s, but at one point I had to laugh, and it was during the perennial make-DeKalb-more-business-friendly discussion. I dearly wish more council members truly understood that friendliness is impossible under city manager Anne Marie Gaura. Unless you are…

Reasons to allow the city manager’s contract to expire

City council is expected to vote tonight on a resolution to “amend” city manager Anne Marie Gaura’s employment agreement, which currently expires at the end of this year. My main concern with the vote itself is that it involves the removal of the expiration date from the contract, even though the DeKalb Municipal Code says…

What Kind of Municipal Elections Does City of DeKalb Have?

City of DeKalb candidates for municipal offices in the spring elections are not all using the same ballot petition forms. For example, of the four mayoral candidates, three of them are filing as “independents” and one of them filed a “nonpartisan” form. A similar pattern has occurred with the aldermanic candidates. There are differences. “Independent”…