Page 10-Wednesday, August 8, 1979-The Michigan Daily
ADMINISTRATOR OR MAYOR MORE POWERFUL?
A2 officials debate form of gov't
(Continued from Page 3)
Murray said not having that power
"Doesn't impede" the administrator's
work. "If the administrator is a smart
guy, he ought to know in advance if he
has Council approval" before he hires
someone, and "when he gets ready to
fire, it's best to make sure you have
Former City Clerk Jerome Weiss has
filed a lawsuit against the city claiming
he was denied due process since
Murray fired him in 1978 without sup-
port of Council's vote.
"I DIDN'T WANT to embarrass him
with a vote," Murray said. "I do not
doubt what the vote would have been."
But Murray said he has "con-
siderable authority," and does not feel
he must go to Council "with every
detail. A number of things happen in
government that relate to procedure,
not policy," he added.
James Stephenson, who was mayor
from 1973-1975, advocates the city ad-
ministrator power structure.
"I'VE WORKED with Sy, and I've
seen the skills he uses and exercises in
hiring; I don't regard myself as a
dummy . . . but there's no way I could
handle it as well as he does."
He said the only weakness in Ann Ar-
bor's brand of city administrator struc-
ture "is you have a majority from one
party acting cohesively to make
policy." But, he added, "it doesn't limit
the administration at all in carrying out
But Wheeler said the administrator
has so much power that "maybe you
don't need a mayor." He said the fact
that citizens cannot express no-
confidence in the strongest city official'
at the polls "is a denigration of the
MURRAY DISAGREED. "The most
important aspect is that the ad-
ministrator has no contract and works
at the pleasure of the mayor and coun-
cil." He added, "If the administrator is
not accountable this week, Council can
fire him the next week."
First Ward Councilwoman Susan
Greenberg said, "If there were less
voter apathy, I'd be very favorable to a
full-time mayor." But the Democratic
Councilmwoman conceded, "It's easier
to have an administrator to shake your
The city administrator system is
favored by many observers because of
the bureaucrat's non-political role,
which removes politics from most day-
to-day city operations.
"I WAS NOT political, but I was sen-
sitive to the political process," Murray
said. He added that despite his non-
political role, he always felt he could
persuade Council on matters he con-
Councilman Ken Latta (D-First
Ward) said, "I disagreed with his
(Murray's) willingness to implement
whatever the majority of Council said
whether it's right or wrong." He added
Murray "could have orchestrated vote
blocks" on Council behind the scenes to
get his way. But "the fact that he
allowed himself to get over-identified
with one political party in the city
shows he's lost some of that vim and
Wheeler said, "I think Murray had
his priorities; I think he would present
Council members with information
supporting his view."
BELCHER SAID Murray never over-
stepped the bounds of his authority, ex-
cept during the investment scandal in
1977, for which Council reprimanded
Latta said during that debacle
Murray "grossly overstepped authority
to cut off information flow to Council."
He added that Murray "did it a lot of
times in a lot of ways."
GREENBERG CONCURRED. There
were "numerous policy decisions that
should have been brought to Council
(by Murray), and only were brought to
Council after the fact, when they leaked
Murray has been a strong ad-
ministrator, and it is unclear what
would happen to municipal, power
distribution if his successor is weaker.
Latta speculated, "there will be a
vacuum (once Murray leaves) . . . and
the Republicans will use that to the
max. This virtually guarantees his
Oil spill could pollute
$1.S0 UNTIL 5:30
MONDAY nNuI 1
ADMITTED FOR THE
The FIRST Certified
Crazy Person's Comedy
(Continued from Page 5)
Robert Kemp, director of fisheries
for the Texas Parks and Wildlife
Department, said yesterday the oil
-threatens a $13 million shrimp crop and
- "if the worst happens" - the tourist
industry could lose $300 million.
The Laguna Madre is home to many
species of birds and aquatic life, in-
cluding blue crabs, shrimp, and
"WE THINK that the environmental
impact is minimal at this time, but we
of course essentially don't know,"
Ralph Thompson, executive vice-
president of the tourist bureau on South
Padre Island, said pea-sized tar balls
washed ashore on the beach at 5 a.m.
when the high tide came in. To the nor-
th, many were spotted three to five in-
ches in diameter.
The globules marred the pristine
beaches on the island, a thin finder of
land a half mile wide at its widest point
that stretches 150 miles along the Gulf
of Mexico from the southern tip of
Texas to near Corpus Christi.
"WE HAVE NO serious problems as
far as the beach is concerned," Thom-
pson said. "Of course, we don't know
what the next days or weeks may
Coast Guard boats towed long
"floating fences" across the Brazos
Santiago Pass leading to the Laguna
Madre. Extending to a shallow depth
beneath the surface, the blockades
corral surface oil which is sucked up by
specially equipped vessels.
But the scientists and workers were
unable to protect the rest of the long
coastline. And there were theories that
the tar balls made their way to Texas
beneath the surface.
Meanwhile, some car rental agencies
and hotels reported a few cancellations
of reservations. "They just don't want
to take a chance," said Rosa Bernal, an
employee of the 65-unit Miramar Motel.
More Entertaining ARE YOU READY FOR
'han Humanly Po le A GOOD TIME?
adnnistration wage plan
CHICAGO (AP)-The AFL-CIO inflation program as it begins its
railed against a new Carter ad- second year in the fall.
ministration wage-guideline proposal Kirland, who is presiding over a
yesterday, but the giant labor group three-day AFL-CIO executive council
backed the president in his drive for meeting, said he does not regard the
Senate ratification of SALT II. council's proposals as final ad-
Renewing the federation's bitter op- minstrationpolicy.
position to Carter's voluntary anti-in- "I do beleve that the matter is still
flation program, AFL-CIO Secretary- open to discussion. If it's not, then I
Treasurer Lane Kirkland denounced an jump ship," said Kirkland, who later
administration suggestion that wages corrected himself by saying, "I mean,
be held to 15.5 per cent over two years. I'll stay on the same ship'- op.
KIRKLAND SAID the federation position to the guidelines.
vigorously opposes the current wage Kirkland has emerged as. the AFL-
guideline of seven per centa year "and CIO's chief spokesman in the absence
we would view a new set of guidelines of President George Meany, 84, who is
coming forth in the same way... as home nursing a painful hip. The
equally unacceptable." secretary-treasurer blasted the wage-
arter's Council on Wage and Price price council as a group of "economists
stability esterd proposedsthe two- of an authoritarian disposition who
' ' _'Y _ - - wold ike'to have thenowerto wave a