VERNON -- A piece of state legislation pertaining to elections is expected to change the future of one city's charter.
House Bill 7037, titled Election Dates for Municipal Office, gives the state the authority to establish election dates for municipal elections. Municipalities would have to select to hold elections either the third Tuesday in March or the first Tuesday after the first Monday in November. The bill hits the house floor for vote Wednesday.
Vernon City Council has worked diligently for months to revise its charter. Much of the discussion has surrounded elections. At a special meeting Monday, council members decided to hold off on the second reading and citizen vote for the charter revisions until the fate of HB7037 is determined, officials said.
According to officials, the council agreed that an ordinance needs to be drafted to create four-year terms, eliminate the mayor position as an elected position and stagger its seats for elections every two years. Officials said the council would like to hold its elections to coincide with general elections.
HB7037 will impact about 150 municipalities that hold elections on dates other than the ones mandated in the bill, states a memo from Florida League of Cities, which clearly opposes the legislation.
Vernon City Council will meet in regular session at 7 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 20. The meeting was rescheduled from Monday, Feb. 19 due to the Presidents' Day holiday.