The coalition representing Denver’s registered neighborhood organizations has endorsed a city councilwoman’s proposal to give legislators the authority to confirm mayoral appointees.
“Over the years, the Inter-Neighborhood Cooperation has requested many times for the voice of the citizens of Denver and their elected Councilpersons be heard,” wrote George E. Mayl in a May 1 email to seven members of the Denver council. “The support of this Charter change by INC starts that journey long awaited.” Mayl is the president of INC, a volunteer organization dating to 1975.
Councilwoman Amanda Sawyer has proposed giving the city council approval over the nominations of 13 mayoral appointees. Those include cabinet members and the heads of safety, including the chiefs of aviation, fire and police, and the sheriff. Sawyer envisions that the change to the city’s charter would mean that appointments go through the council’s consent agenda, normally reserved for routine and noncontroversial items, unless a member asks to consider it separately.
Under that latter scenario, the nomination would go to a committee before the full council takes a vote. Although confirmation would require a majority vote, the mayor would retain the authority to fire appointees unilaterally.
“This would effect greater transparency, hold public officials more accountable and, through the deliberative process, give more voice to the citizens of Denver,” Mayl wrote in INC's endorsement letter to the members of the Finance and Government Committee. “Our most expedient conduit to the city government is through our City Council members.”