Among the issues Westlake voters will be asked to vote on in November 2020 are 11 proposed amendments to the Westlake City Charter, including a 0.9 mill Police and Fire Levy (detailed below). Mayor Dennis M. Clough and City Council have distributed informational materials to voters about changes proposed by each of these issues, including ballot language and explanations of actions taken with regard to each proposed amendment. Scrollable versions of these materials are included below and displayed chronologically with respect to their distribution to voters.
In 1966 the voters in Westlake approved a 0.9 mill levy to support the operations of the Police and Fire Departments. Since then this levy has been renewed every five years and is currently set to expire at the end of 2020. In November this police and fire levy will be on the ballot for a renewal. This is an important funding source that continues to assure that our safety forces remain strong. This is not a new tax. The levy generates approximately $1.4 million annually and is used to cover the costs of 14 of our safety personnel in the Police and Fire Departments which constitutes about 15% of our safety forces. The City currently has 50 sworn police officers and 40 sworn fire fighters.
The Mayor included a detailed insert in the October-November Mayor's Newsletter, which displays the changes proposed by the 2019-20 Charter Review Committee side-by-side with the changes approved by City Council on July 16. Mayor Clough vetoed six of the proposed amendments and explained his reasons in a detailed press release published Aug. 14. Below is the aforementioned Newsletter insert and the Mayor's press release explaining his vetoes.
NOTE: These documents also are available via the links included in the above text if they are not displaying correctly below on your device.
City Council approved the language for the Charter amendments at its July 16 meeting and voted to override the Mayor's six vetoes at a special meeting of City Council on Aug. 19. Below is a brochure mailed by City Council “to each elector whose name appears in registration books of the last general or regular municipal election held in the Municipality,” per Charter Article IX, Section 2.
NOTE: The brochure also is available via a link included in the above text if they are not displaying correctly below on your device.