Commission would require amendment

I read the article about the need for a police commission in the city of Glendale ("Forum talks police panel," Feb. 15).

Though I strongly agree with a new commission, this action requires an amendment to the city charter prior to the City Council being allowed to create a police commission that will act as a real commission and not as an advisory board.

I have served for eight years on the Civil Service Commission. I was also part of the committee that reviewed the city charter many years ago and made recommendations that became part of the new city charter.

The Glendale City Charter has given power of employee disciplines and other employee matters to the Civil Service Commission. This is the only commission named in the city charter that has the power to act on employee issues and discipline. It will be improper and illegal for any commission to be created to deal with police issues reserved specifically for the Civil Service Commission. Of course, an advisory board could be instituted, but it will not have any real authority to act. 

To properly institute a police and fire commission that will have real authority and meaningful power, I suggest that the City Council agree to revise the city charter through an initiative that will specifically mention “police and fire commission” and transfer the current powers held by the Civil Service Commission to the Police and Fire Commission. Voters will then evaluate the issues and vote on the amendment to the city charter.

You have my vote on this commission.

Albert Abkarian

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