Big changes could soon be coming to Asbury Park's government.  A special forum that will be held this coming weekend will bring your thoughts to the table.

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The Charter Study Commission has several ideas, from changing the forum of government to moving council elections from May to November.  While they only have until August to make a decision, they have been at it for the past eight months - ever since they first banded together.

Pamela Lamberton, the chair of the commission, tells us "we are going to recommend a new form of government but at this time, we haven't made a final decision yet.  We hope to accomplish this in the next few weeks.  The event Saturday will allow us to take public comment and suggestions into consideration."

Mayor Ed Johnson, who is set to retire on June 30th after serving in government and politics in the city since 1998, says "the city is governed under the Municipal Mayor form of government, where a five-member City Council is elected every four years and Council Members select a mayor among themselves."

The Council then hires a City Manager to manage the day-to-day operations.  It's known as a council-manager form of government and has been in place for the last 90 years.

The city could change to a mayor/council form of government, where a mayor acts as the chief executive and administrator of a municipality.

The public forum is this Saturday, June 22nd from 12 noon till 2 p.m. at the City Council Chambers at 1 Municipal Plaza.

Johnson adds "commissioners want your input regarding what form of government you feel is the most responsive, accountable, economical or efficient for our city."

With Johnson retiring, he tells us he's anxious to get back to being a concerned resident and citizen of the city he loves.

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