Friday, July 20, 2012

City council unanimously approves a human rights commission.

I heard the names of the mayoral appointments before the meeting even began, and felt good enough about it to do other work rather than attend the meeting.

Now comes the fun part: Funding it. I suspect the caterwauling will return to the fore once money comes into the picture.

Until then, it certainly is refreshing to have a progressive, intelligent and forward-looking 3rd district council representative. Kudos to Greg Phipps for his work in removing eight years of Budweiser karaoke stains from the community fabric.

New Albany human rights commission gets approval; Council splits vote over bill payment authority, by Daniel Suddeath (News and Tribune)

NEW ALBANY — A white university professor and a black state Senate moderator are the first two appointments to the municipal Human Rights Commission, as the New Albany City Council established the body on final reading Thursday.

With an 8-0 vote, as Councilman Pat McLaughlin was absent, Councilman Greg Phipps’ ordinance ordaining the commission passed after it was approved unanimously on first and second readings earlier this month.

The commission will weigh human rights complaints that can be submitted by any New Albany resident. Upholding equal opportunity for education, employment and property acquisition are among the charges of the body.

The ordinance was revised between second and final readings in order to “tighten up” the definition of disabled as well as to ensure the council must approve any procedures the commission chooses to implement, Phipps said.

While there was little discussion on the measure before it was passed on final reading, Phipps said previously he would like to see board appointees “reflect the diversity of the community.”

The body will consist of five members, two appointed by the mayor, two selected by the council and the remaining person elected by the four designees.

Mayor Jeff Gahan’s selections for the commission were announced by his staff after the ordinance passed.

Cliff Staten, a white professor of Political Science at Indiana University Southeast joined Tonye Rutherford, a black state senate moderator and former city council candidate as Gahan selections.

Phipps requested the council make its appointments during its next meeting, which will be Aug. 6. Council President Diane McCartin-Benedetti requested council members submit names of nominees to her so they can be considered prior to that meeting.


Iamhoosier said...

I probably should know this but what is a "state senate moderator"?

Matt Nash said...

community organizer was taken

Iamhoosier said...

Fair enough. Thanks.