Mayor, Metro Council battle over Neighborhood Place changes - WDRB 41 Louisville News

Mayor, Metro Council battle over Neighborhood Place changes

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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) – Mayor Greg Fischer is questioning whether a recent ordinance passed by Louisville Metro Council is legal.

On Oct. 22, Metro Council members passed an ordinance aimed at restricting the control Mayor Fischer’s office has over staff reorganization at Neighborhood Place sites. The community centers scattered throughout Metro Louisville provide accessible health, education, employment and human services that support children and families in their progress toward self-sufficiency.

In early October, Fischer administration proposed a “reorganization” of Neighborhood Place that would have laid off 15 employees and eliminated a coordinator at each location. Council members complained about the lack of information provided by Fischer’s administration on the changes.

"The way they are doing it now, saying they are going to get rid of all the administrators and we're going to have one person over all eight and then another person under them over four, it's like you have a bus full of people at each location but no one wants to drive the bus," Councilwoman Marianne Butler (D-District 15) said at the time.

However, those changes were held off after Metro Council’s Budget Committee voted 8-1 to prevent Fischer from making overhaul changes to the staff.

On Thursday, Fischer sent a letter to Metro Council President David Tandy saying he would not sign the ordinance council passed that prevented him from making changes.

“I am returning this ordinance, unsigned,” Fischer wrote. “I am seeking the advice of the Attorney General as to its legal validity and effect.”

Fischer cites KRS 67C.105 in his argument against the legality of the ordinance saying the statute “vests all the executive and administration powers in the Mayor including the power to supervise, administer, and control all departments and agencies.”

During the vote on Oct. 22, several council members expressed concerns about the possibility of the ordinance violating separation of powers in government. A representative from the Mayor’s Office told Metro Council members that they would be kept abreast of any changes from this point forward. However, Council still voted 20-3 to pass the ordinance.

There is no indication on when the Attorney General may issue an opinion on whether the ordinance is legal.

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