Rod Thomson in the Sarasota Herald Tribune says:
Now might be the time for an elected mayor for the city of Sarasota
If results are any measurement, the city of Sarasota's current form of government has served well. While there are problems -- there will always be problems -- overall, the city is well ahead of most cities in economic vibrancy, tax rate, a successfully booming downtown and quality of life.
But it is not always wise to look in the rearview mirror to see where one should be heading.
It just may be time for a new form of city government to take some of the diffused power from the five members of the City Commission, with each taking a turn as a ceremonial mayor, and consolidate it in the hands of a true elected mayor.
I am unsure of the answer to my question but it is certainly time to ask and think about possibilities. We need to come together to discuss how / what style government can best serve us.
There are no easy answers on what's best ... many times it depends if I like what you are trying to do to me. I think the form of government is less important than the people doing the jobs -- not just the elected or staff jobs. We all have a part in running government.
In my role as president of CCNA I hear lots of people discussing this issue many times people are not happy with some decision made my local (ok national also) official. Who is in charge? City Commission / City Manager / Citizens / Nobody ??
I tend to think that the really good things going on in Sarasota are not based on the day to day goings on of city government. We live in a great place and as a city we have had some good leaders that have pushed us to do some good things (like the downtown plan).
It is the vision we all create for Sarasota that is important. Lets keep thinking about that vision and the smaller decisions made every day will get us there.