Weak Mayor vs. Strong Mayor Form of Government... which is a better fit for Commerce City?

Commerce City currently has a “Weak Mayor” system of government. What that means is that council members are the leaders and policy makers elected to represent the community. They concentrate on policy issues that are responsive to citizens' needs and wishes. The city council hires a City Manager who prepares a budget for the Mayor and Council's consideration; recruits, hires, and supervises the government's staff; serves as the Mayor and Council's chief adviser; and carries out the Mayor and Council's policies. The Mayor and Council and citizens count on the manager to provide complete and objective information, pros and cons of alternatives, and long-term consequences.

A “Strong Mayor” system of government gives the mayor the responsibility and accountability of the day to day city operations. Everything the current City Manager does the mayor would assume.

*Switching to a strong mayor set-up would require a change to the city's charter, which means it would have to be approved by voters.


Back_2_Basics said...

What a question!

Well, I don't know, but it would make the people in Commerce City pay a lot more attention to the elections.

Maybe a good thing.

MicD said...


Stay with the weak mayor format. There are universities that train city managers that bring expertise in management/administration and an ethic of clean and efficient government.

A regular guy mayor would not have this opportunity.

Still a good question.

Hyde said...

same topic of discussion in Wheat Ridge and Colorado Springs.

It would be entirely up to the mayor. I think Commerce City would be too scared to trust its entire city's future to some of its candidates.

Not a good idea for Commerce City.

At least not now.

Sans said...

I like the idea of a strong mayor. Give it all to one guy who really cares about the city, someone that would not waste our money on outside consultants.

I like it, I would support this idea.

A friend of the city said...

Just a FYI,

There is a third option:

Hybrid Model: Chief administrative officer cities

A growing number of mayor-council cities have begun adding a new professional position, that of city administrator or chief administrative officer (CAO) in the mayor's office. CAOs serve under the mayor and assist with the mayor's administrative and policy-related responsibilities. Generally, this position may be responsible for budget preparation, personnel administration, and the daily supervision of departments. Theoretically, the role of a CAO frees the mayor from the minutiae of administrative details to allow the mayor to concentrate on policy development and political leadership roles.

Anonymous said...

it would reduce the cooks in the kitchen.

Ask yourself, could you do what a city managers does?

Better yet, do you think Paul Natale could do what the city manager does?

Wes, Northern Range, Commerce City said...

I think paul could. With one of those Hybrid CAOs

Ryland, North Range said...

I LOVE IT! YES I would support a strong mayor in a second!

Lets all wait until we see what the goals of the city manager were in 2009 and then we will see how hard this job really is.

Strong mayor would need a professional person as an assistant.


Core Comments said...



We need to stick to the weak mayor format.

Sorry people, we are far far away from this type of talk!

roger said...

Not now, but in 5 to 10 years a Definite YES!

JDK, Historic City said...

I really didn't even know what kind of gov, commerce city even had until now. you learn something everyday.

Anonymous said...

To be clear: while I don’t agree with the 72K given to Jerry this has nothing to do with him. I would love the idea of a strong mayor format in our city with our continued growth. Why have a city manager and two assistant city managers? There should be a full time mayor with a city manager and eliminate one position. This is no longer the small town from roughly five years ago that many of those belonging to groups like the carz club, tbcc, the bullock recall committee can’t seem to let go of. I’m sure businesses considering our city would like to see a strong leadership position as well. Is it time to get this to the voters??

Funny how people openly acknowlege that our mayor has no power but blamed him for just about everything including the failure of our nations economy in a recall attempt.

C_City Voter

Ollie North Guy said...

your right the commerce mayor really has no power. think about it, he is really only the tie breaker if that should occur.

I trust everyone one of our past mayors to run the city as a strong mayor position.

Commerce City seems to have bad luck when it comes to city managers.

From a previous post:
By the way I am still shocked that NO ONE reported that the Commerce City manager was given a DUI in Glendale in 2001 during the whole City Manager/Police Chief thing recently.


Anonymous said...

i have no idea what you are all talking about.

i thought the mayor ran the city and we had a city manager to handle the tax money and do what the mayor says.

why doesn't the mayor have any power?

Out_and_About said...

not at all, the mayor and council are basically the same, the mayor runs the meeting and does have some power in a emergency public safety situations that is basically it.

And basically does ribbon cuttings, if there are any, but that is for another day.

Sans said...

council vote 4 to 4 to push off glen murray to the end of the meeting.

So funny!

Sans said...

bob is upset at channel nine because he didn't get any airtime.

who knew bob was the tv type.

man, you learn something everyday.

Anonymous said...

I agree Jadie,
I don't think the tent will burn down, BUT I would NEVER put my name on it.

DeeDee said...

Jadie, easy answer, they treat you like a puppet. I am proud that you are standing up.

Christol, Commerce City said...

Just say it, Citizen Communication doesn't really mean Communication. It is more citizen standing there talking to the wall.

promote discussions said...

Mile High Market Place needed Commerce City because the county would not allow them to keep their tent up.

So what makes them think they can come in and try to strong arm council with David Foster?

With a our deal or NO DEAL.

Not fair for others, why do they get a special deal?

Anonymous said...

Have you been to the "tent" at Mile High Market Place??
I have, it is open, open, open. You'd have a much greater risk of a fire problem inside your car.
You can walk right out of the tent!!
Jadie is only fighting because she wants the fire dept to be employed by the city and then go union!!

Anonymous said...

Tent is pretty open. But if that suckers goes up in smoke I would not want to be near it.

Lavetto, CC said...

I think the tent is just fine the way it is. If Fire Depart says it is okay, it will be just fine.

Trust in the professionals

Anonymous said...

would you people post on the right blogs please...If you can read this discussion is "Weak Mayor vs. Strong Mayor Form of Government... which is a better fit for Commerce City?"

Jesse, C City said...

after tonight, I would say, we need to stick to the weak mayor format.

We are not at all ready to move forward.

Anonymous said...

Jesse, would you elaborate? Many people have tunnel vision, isn’t Paul Natale term limited and this won't happen while he's in office. Let's have forward vision here.
By eliminating one of the assistant city manager positions the city would save money in benefits costs. How would this not benefit the city?

Jesse, C City said...

not about paul, about the jim benson who is rumored to run. paul is term limited.

To Legit to Quit said...

I like this idea, I would support it.
It would have to be with some support system, but I do think it is a good idea.

Anonymous said...

$124,398 is the average salary earned by U.S. governors. The average annual salary of a mayor is $67,500.

This form of government would be GREAT for commerce city.

Anonymous said...

So both the assistant city managers make more than the average governor? What is wrong with this picture?

Anonymous said...

The problem with this is the good ole boy network still having fingers in this city.
I do not believe the voters will be savey enough to recognize the "players" and we will return to the deals to friends etc.
Dollars saved is not enough. I remember the old regime.
I don't want it back!!