The Pinellas County Charter and Charter Review Commission
The 2015-2016 Charter Review Commission has completed their work. The final report, as approved by the Charter Review Commission at their June 15, 2016 Public Hearing, is below.
In Florida, counties are subdivisions of the state. In 1968, Florida voters amended the state constitution to provide counties with the power to govern themselves, often referred to as home-rule. Counties can enhance their home-rule authority by adopting a charter. Pinellas County became a charter county in 1980 when the charter was approved by the voters at referendum. Currently, 20 of Florida’s 67 counties are charter counties.
Pinellas County’s Charter is reviewed every eight years by a Charter Review Commission (CRC), which can then place amendments to the Charter on the ballot to be considered by the voters. The County Commission accepted applications for the Citizen Appointments through June 1, 2015. Each Commissioner made one individual citizen appointment, with the remaining two citizen appointments made by the Board of County Commissioners as a whole. The CRC gives the citizens of Pinellas County a direct influence on the structure of their local government.
The CRC started meeting in August 2015 and will present their final report to the Citizens of Pinellas County by July 2016. Any amendments to the Charter recommended by the CRC will then be placed on the November 2016 ballot for a vote by the Citizens of Pinellas County.