A reader says there's rumbling in Little Rock
about beginning a drive here similar to that underway in Fort Smith
to change the form of city government.
As the Democrat-Gazette reported this morning
(subscription), a petition drive is underway in Fort Smith to change from a city manager to mayor-council municipal government.
Little Rock has a hybrid administrator system. The mayor has a bit more power, but it's limited. The ultimate power rests in six votes of a board controlled by moneyed neighborhoods. Little Rock has a strong city manager and professional staff, but there's often a lack of clarity about who's in charge — mayor or manager — and the board sometimes overrides staff. Mayor-council would be more democratic and leave no doubt where the buck stops.