Orange County Charter Review Commission likely to go unnoticed again by public

One of the best games of political chess that is played in Central Florida every couple of years is the process of the County Charter Commission.

If you’ve never heard of the CRC, you’re not alone, in fact, you’re in the majority of not knowing about one of the most powerful non-elected government entities in the region.

Here is Orange County’s description of the CRC (page HERE).

Orange County voters decided to adopt the charter form of government in 1986. Every four years, a new charter review is conducted by a commission appointed by the Board of County Commissioners (BCC). The Charter Review Commission (CRC) is the reviewing group

The CRC is not allowed to change the charter. Instead, it decides what questions, if any, to put to vote. It publishes a report at least 60 days before election-time, and then voters decide if the suggested changes will be made.

If that language gave you a headache or almost put you to sleep, basically the County Commission puts together a group of carefully chosen people that gets to suggest really important changes to the community.

Nobody ever watches these guys. The public hearings are often attended by a dozen or so insiders, the subcommittees even less.

These CRCs are often an interesting assembly of former lawmakers, rising stars, connected staff, and more. In the past years, they’ve put questions on the ballot regarding the structure of our local government and elections.

You’ve probably answered their ballot questions and not even known it.

In a depleted news producing market, these commissions, especially in massive Orange County, will go unchecked. We need to do our part to get as many eyeballs as possible on what they’re doing.

You need to get to know the members (page HERE) and make it out to some meetings (schedule HERE).

If they’re doing something you don’t think is right, let them know, and then let your neighbors know.

The decisions made by this commission are too important to go unnoticed for another election cycle.

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