As someone curious about what Portland’s Charter Commission has in store for us, I thank the Press Herald for printing former City Manager Joseph E. Gray’s critical column (April 13) suggesting that the commission “… would be making a terrible decision for the future of Portland if it recommends to the citizens that the (proposed) executive mayor be given the authority to either prepare or direct the preparation of Portland’s budget.” Mr. Gray spent 10-plus years in the trenches as city manager, so he knows of what he speaks. If it ain’t broken, let’s not try to fix it.

When the Charter Commission has completed its work, its members will be expected to appear before us to explain its rationale for recommended charter changes. Likewise, our present mayor, and former mayors, such as Jim Cohen, Jill Duson, Ethan Strimling, Anne Pringle, Pam Plumb, Michael Brennan and George Campbell, reflecting decades of experience, need to be heard from, pro bono publico.

Who better to organize such forums than Portland’s League of Women Voters, perhaps with the support of the Press Herald and our neighborhood organizations?

R. John Wuesthoff

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