The Charter Review Commission heard a lot conflicting stories from the supporters and detractors of the commission form of government about whether it protects taxpayers and ensures accountability. To get the real data, we decided to survey City Hall employees in November 2016. We went to tremendous lengths to guarantee their anonymity and protect them from retribution.
We asked them whether they agreed with the statement: “I believe the Commission form of government prevents wasteful spending and protects the taxpayers?” Of those, 66.7 percent disagreed with that statement and only 22.2 percent agreed. Another 18.1 percent neither agreed nor disagreed.
We also asked them if they believed “the Commission form of government ensures the accountability of commissioners for the performance of their departments.” Of the respondents, 56.9 percent disagreed with that statement and only 25 percent agreed. Again, 18.1 percent neither agreed nor disagreed.
The writer is chair of the Saratoga Springs Charter Review Commission.