What’s on Ann Arbor’s November 2nd poll? A guide for voters to the 2021 election

The Michigan Daily has compiled a local election guide to help voters understand what will be on the ballot for the November 2nd Ann Arbor special election. Voters will consider four election proposals, which are described below as proposals A through D.

Locations for postal voting and ballot boxes

Residents wishing to vote by mail or at a designated voter registration office must register by October 18. Voters can apply for a postal vote here. After October 18th Voters can register in person at the city’s citizens’ office with proof of residence until 2.11.20 a.m.

Voters must return ballot papers no later than 8:00 p.m. on election day, although the city clerk’s office recommends voters return ballot papers in advance. Any Ann Arbor resident who votes by post can return their ballot to the following drop-off points:

  • Located in Larcom City Hall, 301 E. Huron St., at the north entrance
  • Outside Larcom City Hall on Ann Street, by the Customer Service Drop Box on the north side of Ann Street and east of Fifth Avenue.
  • Parking lot at Veterans Memorial Park Ice Arena and Pool, 2150 Jackson Ave.
  • Outside the Ann Arbor Fire Station, 5, 1946 Beal Ave.
  • Outside Cobblestone Farm / Ann Arbor Parks and Recreation Customer Service Center, 2781 Packard Rd.
  • Outside Ann Arbor Fire Station 6 at the Eisenhower Entrance, northwest side of the building, 1881 Briarwood Circle

Suggestion A: Buy with the best value for money

In July, Ann Arbor City Council approved an amendment to the city charter in the hope that city officials would be better able to assess the quality of bidders for public improvement projects.

If accepted, this proposal would require the City of Ann Arbor to contract for supplies, materials or public improvements on a “best value” basis rather than go to the lowest responsible bidder, the lowest price.

The change allows the city to prioritize other factors when reviewing contracts, such as: B. References from previous jobs as well as the size, complexity and success of previous projects.

The city will also take into account whether the bidder complies with occupational health and safety, such as the quality of employee benefits, and whether the bidder carries out a training program for its employees. As part of this proposal, the city will also evaluate any previous violations of state, local, or federal labor protection laws.

Proposal B: Ranking list voting for the election of the city council

If passed, this proposal would allow Ann Arbor voters to vote for candidates for Mayor and Ann Arbor City Council by ranked voting in the primary and general election if the State of Michigan approves this electoral system.

First invented in the 1850s, ranked voting is a system that allows voters to rank candidates based on their preference on a ballot, rather than just picking one candidate. If no candidate receives a majority vote, the leaderboard selection uses an elimination process to narrow down a winner with a majority of the votes.

According to Fair Vote, 22 jurisdictions across the country used ranked voting in their last election, and 20 more will use it for the first time in November. In 2016, Maine became the first state to approve ranked voting for all state and state elections, and Alaska joined the list in 2020.

Ann Arbor used the rankings back in 1975 when the city elected Albert Wheeler as its first and only black mayor. After backlash from local Republicans resulting in a lawsuit and overturning process, Ann Arbor voters reversed the ranked election in 1976.

Proposal C: Emergency procurement

This proposal, if approved, would require the Ann Arbor City Council to establish procedures through a city ordinance for the city administrator to make emergency purchases.

In August, the city council approved this election proposal for the city administrator to make emergency purchases without seeking approval from the city council. The city currently has a policy that allows the city administrator to make emergency purchases for supplies, materials, equipment, professional services and construction services, but there is no provision in the city charter that specifically allows this under the August resolution.

Suggestion D: $ 75,000 dollar limit

In addition to Proposal C, this proposal gives the city administrator the authority to approve purchases and enter into contracts when the city cost is $ 75,000 or less, with adjustments for inflation.

Currently, the city charter requires that all contracts over $ 25,000 be put to tender – or that different companies bid against each other for the job – and seek approval from the city council. This proposal would keep the $ 25,000 limit on tenders but set a new limit of $ 75,000 on city council approval. If approved, the city council and city officials will no longer devote time to thorough approval processes for certain low-budget proposals.

The daily editor Kristina Zheng can be reached at [email protected]

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