What reforms are necessary in the City Council's committee rules and structure?

Corruption

In that I am not a current Council member I am not fully aware of what reforms have been
suggested with regards to the committee rules and structure. I am, however, concerned
that the City Council be run as a separate branch of government, and not subservient to
the Office of the Mayor. As Alderman, I would also be in favor of any reform that would
allow the City Council to operate more effectively and efficiently.

A major reform should be the length of time that an ordinance can be held in committee. I am a
believer of an up or down vote. I would like the Ethics Committee to have the power to subpoena
powers. I would like to see hearings in the city council under oath for members of the CPS Board
of Education to be questioned about several issues (school closings, contracts, school
designations and firings).

The ability for a committee chair to control and allocate jobs is in need of better oversight.

No response provided

I believe the current situation, where decisions are made by the Administration and dictated to
the Council, makes most of the committees “for show”, at best, and extraneous, at worst. The
way things should be in a Strong Council/Weak Mayor system is for issues and budgets to be
discussed in committee and voted out as recommendations to the Council as a whole. This
allows for maximum transparency and citizen participation, and, though a single alderman
doesn't have the power to make this happen on their own, it is what I want to work toward when I
am elected.

Chevette A. Valentine IVI-IPO 2015 Chicago City Council

N/A

Consolidating City Council Committees in order to provide for more efficient and useful information
sharing towards the public is ideal in City government, and should be something we work
towards as a City council. As Alderman, I would work towards increasing public input in all committee
meetings by making accessible, the pertinent information, data and statistics surrounding
major issues pertaining to committees. Committees that don’t regularly meet or aren’t part of the
policy discussion on particular issues need to be consolidated or eliminated in order to maintain
efficient clear information so our Alderman can get informed facts based on clear research instead
of faulty, differentiating opinions.

I believe all Committees should be required to meet at least once a month and publish reports on their
activities.

No response provided

I believe the current situation, where decisions are made by the Administration and dictated to
the Council, makes most of the committees “for show”, at best, and extraneous, at worst. The
way things should be in a Strong Council/Weak Mayor system is for issues and budgets to be
discussed in committee and voted out as recommendations to the Council as a whole. This
allows for maximum transparency and citizen participation, and, though a single alderman
doesn't have the power to make this happen on their own, it is what I want to work toward when I
am elected

No response provided

No response provided

I believe the City Council committee rules and structure generally work well. I do, however, think
that it can be difficult for individual or groups of aldermen to push forward an agenda without
widespread agreement bordering on consensus. That is a two-sided coin, as consensus can
promote harmony and can be helpful in making sure that proposals are fully considered. But I
would welcome the opportunity to examine ideas for opening the process more.

Joseph J. Moseley II IVI-IPO 2015 Chicago City Council

ESSAY.

No comment at this time. However, upon being elected and before taking office, I would review the rules and
structure for changes. I have no doubt that they are antiquated and in need of overhaul.

We absolutely must keep the office of legislative inspector general. Not only that, but we must further empower the office to accomplish their mission. Until corruption and patronage is a thing of the past in Chicago, a future that sadly looks to be further off than we would hope, we must take steps to increase accountability, no matter how uncomfortable that makes elected officials and government employees. I believe we need to increase government transparency so our leaders are more accountable to the people they serve. In addition to the above measure, we need to make our finances more transparent, giving the public unfiltered access to how their money is being spent. A current, search­able, online “ledger” similar to one recently unveiled by the State would be a great way to “let sunlight in” and make city government more accountable to those we serve.

I do not have any recommendations for changing committee rules and structure at this time.

Reform is necessary to prevent the Rules Committee from becoming the place where good legislation goes to die – by preventing proposed ordinances and resolutions from reaching the City Council for hearing or vote. I am in favor of robust debate and public airing of all issues. Also, I support Alderman Fioretti’s idea of holding meetings on more important issues at night in order to facilitate greater public participation and transparency.

No response provided

I would not combine and or eliminate any committees because the City of Chicago is an immense
metropolitan area that needs several departments to safeguard the concerns and the issues of
the residents. There are over a million people in the city and I believe the number of committees
suffices and the current structure addresses the needs of the constituents adequately.

Have contracts come before the City Council.

I cannot determine what reforms are necessary at this time

No response provided

Michael E. LaFargue IVI-IPO 2015 Chicago City Council

a. Item sent to committee must be resolved on 6 to 9 months.

I believe reforms are necessary in the notice process for the City Council’s committee rules and
structure. This includes the amount of notice given to both the public and council members

No response provided

Carlos Ramirez-Rosa IVI-IPO 2015 Chicago City Council

The City Council’s rules must be changed to ensure measures not backed by the Mayor are able
to come to a full vote. This will require electing independent Aldermen who take their legislative
duties seriously.

I would like to obtain more information before providing recommendations for reform.

"No Response Provided"

I would like to see a supermajority of the committee members, enable a previously blocked
ordinance, to come to the floor for a vote.

Too many to list! First and foremost, I believe it’s a complete conflict of interest for any alderman
or city worker, for that matter, to engage in lobbying efforts or any sort of representation while in
office

Susan Sadlowski Garza IVI-IPO 2015 Chicago City Council

candidate's responce

No response provided

Changes in the rules and structure of the City Council committees won’t necessarily improve the effectiveness of the committees. What will improve the committees are placing aldermen that truly want to legislate into those seats and that won’t just be a rubber stamp for the Mayor or special interests. Those aldermen must also take more time to analyze legislation to avoid more mistakes such as the Parking Meter contract.

Stephen Niketopoulos IVI-IPO 2015 Chicago City Council

The need for some Alderman to resort to hidden rules to bring transparency to city council is alarming. Procedures are commonly used to hide agreements and deals, showing the need for such tactics, but not changing the overall problem. The committees have too much control to hear and not hear what they want, I would be in favor of reform and restructuring to add more accountability to the council.

No response provided

The role of the Rules Committee must be reconsidered. Legislation is often sent to Rules
as a means to prevent debate. From there, the committee chairman has the authority to
never schedule a hearing on the matter, killing legislation that might otherwise be popular.
Instead, legislation should be assigned to the appropriate committee by topic. If there is a
disagreement about which committee is appropriate, the resolution’s sponsor should have
the authority to place it in the appropriate committee. As public servants, aldermen should
be encouraging debate on the issues, not stifling debate through procedural tricks.

We need to continue working closely with the Board of ethics

See above. I also believe City Council should have another attorney in the Office of
Legislative Council that works exclusively for City Council.

I am a co-author of the ordinance establishing the City Council Office of Financial Analysis. That office needs to be filled with a competent, independent Financial Analyst and staff. I also believe that certain powers should be put in the executive branch, such as worker’s compensation analysis.
The Inspector General should be given full powers to investigate City Council as any other City employee and the LIG should be merged into the Inspector General’s office.

I believe the process by which items are held in committee indiscriminately should be
reformed. I believe any Chairman who has an interest in items on the agenda should not
be allowed to preside over the hearing.

I believe that committees should be run in a way to allow the public and experts to provide
information to the Council and to allow Council to ask questions of those witnesses. It should be
easier for ordinances and other matters to be discharged from committee. Chairpersons of
committees should not be allowed to avoid offering hearings on matters that they or the Mayor
wish to kill.

Roll call votes
should be limited to substantive matters. I also think aldermen should be furnished with
advance copies of pending ordinances. Budgeting should be a year-round process.

Any alderman
who has a business relationship with someone doing business with the City should not be
allowed to chair a committee. The chair of a committee should not have sole authority to
decide whether to bring an item up for vote in the committee.