Council president wants Bach to reconsider his decision to ignore council

Published: December 20, 2013, 11:11 pm, by Monica Mendoza

Colorado Springs City Council President Keith King wants Mayor Steve Bach to reconsider his decision to ignore the council’s budget ordinance.

One day after the Bach held a press conference to announce that he would ignore a section of Council’s budget ordinance that limits his ability to move money, King issued a press release asking Bach to reconsider.

Both Bach and King say the city’s charter is being misinterpreted by the other side. Bach maintains the charter directs the executive branch to set the city’s budget, including its format. The legislative branch can add or delete programs, but it cannot change the budget format, Bach said.

In its budget ordinance, Council changed five appropriations departments to 12 and said the move made the budget more transparent to citizens.  King said the city’s charter does not outline the number of appropriations departments in the budget and it is within the council’s purview to make that determination. King said a council-approved ordinance is the law of the city.

Still, Bach  instructed city staff to disregard council’s actions.

“If the mayor disagrees with an ordinance that has been duly passed by council—which he is to enforce—he can choose to either abide by it or take the matter to District Court,” King said.
“I expect we should be a city of laws and obey the laws that are passed. We don’t have a right to choose which laws we follow. “