Council members appointed as committee heads

May 14, 2013

Frank Lewis

PDT Staff Writer

When Steve Sturgill accepted the position of President of Portsmouth City Council, he immediately set — as one of his priorities — the establishment of Council committees, which he said would make the city function better and give Council members more involvement with the city operation.

At Monday night’s Portsmouth City Council meeting, Sturgill unveiled the committees and who will chair those committees.

The Budget and Finance Committee will be involved with all matters relating to revenues and expenditures pursuant to the actions of the mayor and City Council. Sturgill said he would be chairman of that committee.

The Public Works, Codes and Standards Committee will be responsible for all issues involving construction and maintenance of roads, sewers and necessary services dealing with water and solid waste management. Sturgill appointed Jim Kalb to be the chairman.

The Legal, Legislative and Safety Committee will be chaired by Gene Meadows, and will be responsible for maintaining with the City Code and Charter, Rules of Order for the City Council, State Legislative actions and City Council Code of Ethics. Sturgill said it will also be responsible for cooperating with the City Solicitor’s office, all issues relating to fire and police, 911 and other actions involving the new responsibilities of dealing with Homeland Security.

Kevin Johnson has been assigned the Economic Development and Sustainability Committee, which handles all issues relating to efforts to aid economic advancement and provide for a suitable living environment for all citizens. In addition, that committee will develop solutions and goals for creating urban innovation and design.

The Parks, Service, Buildings, Recreation and Cultural Committee will be responsible for parks, playgrounds and greenways, and recreational programming activities and facilities. It will also be responsible for city owned property. Rich Saddler will be the chairman.

The Personnel, Performance and Audit Review Committee will be responsible for relating to employment, employee relationship, human resources and equal opportunity provisions. That committee will provide objective information on the operations of government programs and develop accountability to the public. Since the resignation of Third Ward Councilman Nick Basham, there is no current chairman for that committee.

Sturgill said the committees will have a minimum of six public meetings per year; committee representatives appointed by the chairperson, will be a maximum of three city staff and three public representatives, and committee reports will be given at the second Council meeting of the month in lieu of Council ward reports.

Frank Lewis may be reached at 740-353-3101, ext. 252, or at flewis@civitasmedia.com. For breaking news, follow Frank on Twitter @FrankLewisPDT.