Rainier city offices will be closed Friday, July 3, 2020 in observance of the Independence Day holiday.
(Amended version approved by voters 1994)
To provide for the government of the city of Rainier, Columbia County, Oregon; and to repeal all charter provisions of the city enacted to the time that the charter is enacted.
Be it enacted by the people of the city of Rainier, Columbia County, Oregon:
Names and Boundaries
Section 1. Title of Enactment. This Enactment may be referred to as the Amended charter of the City of Rainier.
Section 2. Name of City. The City of Rainier, Columbia County, Oregon, shall continue to be a municipal corporation with the name “City of Rainier.”
Section 3. Boundaries. The city shall include all territory encompassed by its boundaries as they now exist or hereafter are modified by the voters, by the council, or by any other agency with legal power to modify them. The recorder shall keep in the recorder’s office at the city hall, at least two copies of this charter, in each of which shall be maintained an accurate, up-to-date description of the boundaries. The copies and description shall be available for public inspection at any time during the regular office hours of the city recorder. [Section 3 as amended by election held January 8, 1962.]
Section 4. Powers of the City. The city shall have all powers which the constitution, statutes, and common law of the United States and of the state expressly or impliedly grant or allow municipalities, as fully as though this charter specifically enumerated each of those powers.
Section 5. Constitution of Charter. In this charter no mention of a particular power shall be construed to be elusive or to restrict the scope of the powers which the city would have if the particular power was not mentioned. The charter shall be liberally construed, to the end that the city may have all powers necessary or convenient for the conduct of its municipal affairs, including all powers that cities may assume pursuant to the laws and to the municipal home-rule provisions of the constitution of the State of Oregon.
Form of Government
Section 6. Where Power Vested. Except as this charter provides otherwise, all powers of the city shall be vested in the council.
Section 7. Council. The council shall be composed of seven council members elected from the city at large.
Section 8. Council Members. The term of office of each council member in office when this charter amendment is adopted shall continue as their current term of office. To stagger the terms, position 2, 6, and 7 will be elected in two (2) years for four (4) year terms. 1, 3, 4, and 5 will be elected in four (4) years for four (4) year terms.
Section 9. Mayor. At each biennial general election, a mayor shall be elected for a term of two years.
Section 10. Other Officers. Additional officers of the city such as a Municipal Judge, shall be appointed by the mayor with the approval of a majority of the council. A majority of the council may create, abolish, and combine appointive city offices and, except as the majority prescribes otherwise, fill such offices by appointment and vacate them by removal.
Section 11. Salaries. The compensation for the services of each city officer and employee shall be whatever amount the council fixes.
Section 12. Qualifications of Officers. No person shall be eligible to fill an elective office of the city unless at the time of his/her election he/she is a qualified voter within the meaning of the state constitution and has resided in the city one year immediately preceding the election.
Section 13. Meetings. The Council shall hold a regular meeting at least once each month in the City at a time and place which it designates, and may meet at other times in accordance with Council rules and State law. All deliberations and meetings of the Council shall be in accordance with State law.
Section 14. Quorum. A majority of the members of the council shall constitute a quorum for it to do business, but a smaller number may meet and compel the attendance of absent members in a manner provided by ordinance.
Section 16. Meetings to be Public. All deliberations and proceedings at the council shall be in accordance with state law.
Section 17. Mayor’s Functions at Council Meetings. The mayor shall be chairman of the council and preside over its deliberations. He/she shall have authority to preserve order, enforce the rules of the council, and determine the order of business under the rules of the council. The mayor shall have a vote only in case of a tie.
Section 18. President of the Council. At its first meeting after the charter takes effect and thereafter at its first meeting of each odd-numbered year, the council by ballot shall elect a president from its membership. In the mayor’s absence from a council meeting, the president shall preside over it. Whenever the mayor is unable, on account of absence, illness, or other cause, to perform the functions of his/her office, the president of the council shall act as mayor and shall retain the right to vote. When both the mayor and the president of the council shall be absent, an acting president of the council shall be selected by a quorum of the council members and shall retain the right to vote.
Section 19. Vote Required. Except as this charter otherwise provides, the concurrence of a majority of the members of the council present at a council meeting shall be necessary to decide any question before council.
Powers and Duties of Officers
Section 20. Mayor. The mayor shall appoint the committees provided for under the rules of the council. He/She shall sign all approved records of proceedings of the council. He/she shall have no veto power and shall sign all ordinances passed by the council within three days after their passage; and for failure of the mayor to sign any ordinance within such time after the passage of the same by the council, the ordinance shall automatically go into effect 30 days after its passage by the council. Upon approval by the council, the mayor shall endorse all bonds of officers of the city and all bonds for licenses, contracts, and proposals.
Section 21. Municipal Judge. The municipal judge shall be the judicial officer of the city. He/She shall hold within the city a court known as the municipal court for the city of Rainier,Columbia County, Oregon. Except on non-judicial days, the court shall be open for the transaction of judicial business. All areas within the city shall be within the territorial jurisdiction of the court. The municipal judge shall exercise original and exclusive jurisdiction of all crimes and offenses defined and made punishable by the ordinances of the city and of all actions brought to recover or enforce forfeitures or penalties defined or authorized by an ordinance of the city. He/she shall have authority to issue process for the arrest of any person accused of an offense against the ordinances of the city, to commit any such person to jail or admit him/her to bail pending trial, to issue subpoenas, to compel witnesses to appear and testify in court on the trial of any cause before him/her, to compel obedience to such subpoenas, to issue any process necessary to carry into effect the judgments of the court, and to punish witnesses and others for contempt of the court. When not governed by ordinances or this charter, all proceedings in the municipal court for the violation of a city ordinance shall be governed by the applicable general laws of the state governing justices of the peace and justice courts. Trials in the municipal court cases of violation of city ordinances shall be had without juries, unless the defendant demands a jury and shall deposit in court a sum sufficient to pay the per diem of each juryman for one day’s duty in accordance with the standards prevailing in the justice of the peace courts of the State of Oregon, unless the defendant is indigent whereas the fee will be paid for accordingly. Notwithstanding this section, the council may transfer some or all of the functions of the municipal court to an appropriate state court.
Section 22. Regular elections. Regular city elections shall be held at the same times as biennial general state elections and at such places designated by the city council in accordance with the state law. A person may be nominated in a manner prescribed by City ordinance to seek an elective office of the City. No one shall be eligible for an elective office of the City unless at the time of election that person is a qualified elector within the meaning of the State Constitution and has resided in the City during the 12 months immediately preceding the election. The Council shall be the final judge of the qualifications and election of its own members, subject to review by a court of competent jurisdiction. In the event of a tie vote for candidates for an elective office, the successful candidate shall be determined by a public drawing of lots in a manner prescribed by the Council.
Section 23. Commencement of Terms of Office. The term of office of a person elected to an office at a regular city election shall commence the first meeting of the year immediately following the election.
Section 24. Oath of Office. Before entering upon the duties of his/her office, each officer shall take an oath or shall affirm that he/she will support the constitutions and laws of the United States and of Oregon and that he/she will faithfully perform the duties of his/her office.
Vacancies in Office
Section 25. What Creates Vacancy. An office shall be deemed vacant upon the incumbent’s death, incompetence, conviction of a punishable offense that leads to a loss of liberty, resignation, or absence from the city for 30 days without the consent of the council in the case mayor or councilmember; upon the incumbent’s ceasing to possess the qualifications necessary for his/her office; or upon the failure of the person elected or appointed to an office to qualify therefore within three days after the time for his/her term of office to commence; and in case of mayor or councilmember, upon his/her absence from meetings of the council for two consecutive regular meetings without the consent of the council.
Section 26. Filling of Vacancies. Vacancies in elective offices of the city shall be filled by appointment by a majority of the council. The appointee’s term of office shall begin immediately upon his/her appointment and shall continue until the end of the current term. During the temporary disability of any officer or during his/her absence from the city for any cause, his/her office may be filled pro tem in the manner provided for filling vacancies in office permanently.
Section 27. Enacting Clause. The enacting clause of all ordinances hereafter enacted by the council shall be, “The City of Rainier ordains as follows:”
Section 28. Introduction, Reading, and Passage. Introduction, reading, and adoption of ordinance shall be in accordance with the rules of the Council. A reading of an ordinance may be by title only if:
No council member present at the reading requests that the ordinance be read in full or at least one week before the reading: a copy of the ordinance are available for public inspection in the office of the custodian of city records, and notice of their availability is given by written notice posted at the city hall and two (2) other public places in the city. Upon the adoption of an ordinance, the ayes and nays of the council members shall be entered in the record of council proceedings. After adoption of an ordinance, the custodian of city records shall endorse it with its date of adoption and the endorser’s name and title of office.
Section 29. When Ordinances Take Effect. An ordinance enacted by the council shall take effect on the thirtieth day after its enactment. When the council deems it advisable, however, an ordinance may provide a later time for it to take effect, and in case of an emergency, it may take effect immediately.
Section 30. Improvements. Street, sewer, sidewalk, and such other public improvements as the council deems necessary may be undertaken on the motion of the council or on petition of the owners of two-thirds of the property to benefit specially from the improvements. A remonstrance of the owners of two-thirds of the frontage of the property to be specially affected by such an improvement shall defeat such a motion or petition, in which event no further action to effect the improvement shall be taken for six months. The council can declare certain improvements as an emergency, that have to be taken care of immediately.
Section 31. Special Assessments. The procedure for determining the amounts of special assessments, their apportionment to various parcels of property, and the property upon which they are to be levied; for giving notice to property owners and other interested parties, for hearings on and levy assessments; for creating and enforcing assessment liens; and for taking any other action relating to the assessments shall be governed by the applicable law of the state relating to special assessments or by general ordinances enacted by the council.
Section 32. Bids. A contract for public improvements shall be in accordance with state law.
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