Brooklyn Center Considering Charter Change Impacting Mayor’s Power During Emergencies
The Brooklyn Center city council approved the first reading of a change to the city’s charter that would remove the mayor’s authority, with council consent, to take command of police during an emergency.
Instead, the charter would include the mayor ‘may coordinate’ with the city manager, police chief, and other resources to assist with emergency response.
The change was proposed by the city’s charter commission, and it comes in Chapter 2, Section 2.06 of the charter. The sentence that would be stricken reads, “in time of public danger or emergency the Mayor may, with the consent of the Council, take command of the police, maintain order and enforce the law.”
A sentence would be added reading, “in time of public danger or emergency the Mayor may coordinate with the City Manager, Police Chief, Fire Chief, and other municipal resources as part of the emergency response system to communicate with the public and to aid in identifying resources to assist the response effort, to maintain public safety and to respond to the emergency including, but not limited to, requesting assistance from local, state, and federal agents as may be needed.”
The city council approved notice of a public hearing before the second reading of the change. The public hearing will be on May 23.
Mayor Mike Elliott was the lone vote against the change. Council member Dan Ryan was not present at the meeting.
To read the city documents connected to this council action, click here.