Initiative effort gains momentum: People seeking to create an elected Eugene city auditor gather signatures

In the July 29, 2017, issue of the Register-Guard, reporter Christian Hill writes:

It’s full steam ahead for supporters of a proposed ballot initiative to establish an independently elected Eugene city auditor as a check on city government spending and operations.

The initiative’s three chief petitioners and a group of about two dozen volunteers have been gathering signatures since July 5 to qualify for the May ballot.

David Monk, one of the chief petitioners, said the goal is to gather 10,000 signatures from Eugene registered voters by the Oct. 13 deadline. …

A key element of the initiative revolves around how the auditor would pick what to examine. The initiative would leave that entirely up to the auditor, who would not be overseen by the city manager, mayor or council.

By contrast, Mayor Vinis has launched a separate effort to examine broadly whether some type of auditor is needed, with no specifics about whether the auditor would carry out only tasks that were approved by the city manager or elected city leaders.

Vinis started her push after the ballot initiative gained momentum. The two efforts are entirely separate. Vinis said she’s undecided about the initiative effort.

The mayor said she is convening a citizens committee to examine other cities that have city auditors to learn their cost, scope of duties and other details. The committee will not make a recommendation, she said. …

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