Article XII


12.01    City Council Investigative Powers

12.02    Claims Against City For Damages

12.03    Severability Clause

12.04    Campaign Expenditure Reports

12.05    City Property – Public Records

12.06    Sale Of Lake Padden Prohibited

12.07    Appointments – Lack Of Confirmation

12.01 City Council Investigative Powers

The City Council may, in connection with the legislative process, make investigations into the affairs of the City and the conduct of any City department, office or agency and for this purpose may subpoena witnesses, administer oaths, take testimony and require the production of evidence.

12.02 Claims Against City For Damages

All claims for damages against the City must be filed with the Finance Director within the time limit as prescribed by state law, and shall be presented to the City Council, and no ordinance shall be passed allowing any such claim, or any part thereof, or appropriating money or other property to pay or satisfy the same, until such claim has been first referred to the proper department, board, commission, agency or committee, not until such department, board, commission, agency or committee has made its report to the City Council thereon, pursuant to such reference. No action shall be maintained against the City for any claim for damages until the same has been presented to the City Council and 60 days has elapsed after such presentation.

All such claims for damages must accurately locate and describe the defect that caused the injury, accurately describe the injury, give the residence for 6 months past of the claimant, contain the items of damages claimed, and be sworn to by the claimant. All such claims must comply with any additional requirements provided by state law.

12.03 Severability Clause

The provisions, sections, subdivisions and articles of this Charter, shall be considered to be severable, so that if any provision, section, subdivision or article, or its application to any person or circumstance, is altered, amended, abrogated, repealed, superseded by state law or held invalid, the remainder of the particular provision, section, subdivision, article or Charter, or the application thereof to other persons or circumstances, shall not be deemed affected.

12.04 Campaign Expenditure Reports

The City Council shall establish, by ordinance, regulations requiring the reporting of all campaign contributions made to the election campaigns of all candidates for City office and to all campaigns concerning ballot issues.

12.05 City Property – Public Records

The official books, papers and records of all the officers of the City are City property, and shall be kept by such officers during their continuance in office, and then delivered to their successors.

The City Council shall establish by ordinance procedures to make City records available to the public.

12.06 Sale Of Lake Padden Prohibited

Nothing in this Charter shall be construed to permit the City of Bellingham to sell all or any portion of any of the real property it now owns or may hereafter acquire for water supply purposes in Township 37 N. Range 3 E. of Willamette Meridian, and more generally known as Lake Padden, Ruby Creek and Silver Creek Watersheds, whether or not used for water supply purposes, unless a question of such proposed sale shall have been first submitted to the qualified electors of the City at a general or special election called for that purpose and assented to by two-thirds of said electors voting on such question.

12.07 Appointments – Lack Of Confirmation

Where Council approval for any appointment by the Mayor is required by this Charter, and the City Council shall refuse to confirm such appointment, then the Mayor shall within 1 week thereafter make a second appointment for the same position. If the Council shall refuse to confirm the second appointment, then the Mayor shall fill such appointment with an appointee other than the previous 2, without confirmation of the City Council.