October 4, 2012, 7:30 PM
This forum was a chance for voters to learn about the proposed new charter for the City of Saratoga Springs that will be on the ballot in November. The new charter would establish a Council/Manager form of government.
The evening began with a short introduction by the evening’s moderator, Professor Robert Turner of the Government Department at Skidmore College. This was followed by presentations by each of the four experts on the panel — Pat Kane and Peter Martin who are in favor of the proposed change; and Ken Klotz and Jane Weihe who are against the change. After their introductory remarks, Professor Turner asked the panel a series of questions and finally the audience was invited to ask the panel questions. Topics included the advantages and disadvantages of the current or proposed charter, financial implications of implementing the proposed charter or remaining with the current charter, the impact of the proposed charter on current city employees, the proposed transition team, government accountability under the two charters, the impact of the two charters on the number and diversity of candidates for the elected offices.
Ken Klotz is a former Mayor of Saratoga Springs and member of SUCCESS, a group formed to fight the charter change; Jane Weihe is a former candidate for Commissioner of Finance and member of SUCCESS; Pat Kane is a member of the group Saratoga Citizen, formed to develop the charter change amendment; Peter Martin is a former candidate for Commissioner of Finance and member of Saratoga Citizen.