Freeport

http://www.ci.freeport.il.us/

Freeport Mayor Jim Gitz says it’s time to make way for new leaders. He announced Thursday he will NOT run for re-election. 

Gitz was elected in 2013: he also served two terms as mayor, from 1997 - 2005. Gitz says he’s ready for a career change and had made up his mind before Tuesday’s election. That’s when Freeport voters decided to change to a city manager style government, making their mayor a part-time position.  

Landmarks Illinois

Freeport residents voted in favor of changing the city’s form of government from one run by a full-time mayor and city council to one with a city manager running city operations as chief executive.

The measure calling for the change won with 53 percent in favor vs. 47 percent against.  The measure had been backed by a number of businesses and the local chamber of Commerce.  They argued a city the size of Freeport needed a full-time professional running day-to-day operations, and said it would free up the mayor and council to concentrate more on strategic planning.

Committee to Change City Government

A group in Freeport is backing a measure that would place a city manager in charge of the city’s administration.  

Small business owner Pat Leitzen Frye is a former city council member and one-time mayoral candidate. She co-chairs the Committee to Change City Government. Fye says the push for the measure isn’t about particular personalities or policies, but helping the city to work better for everyone.

  The Freeport School District is rolling out more personal standardized tests. 

The new assessment is known as the Measures of Academic Progress Test, and is adaptive.  Unlike the ISAT and PARCC, it  adjusts the difficulty of questions in real time based on students answers.  This means if a student is doing well, they'll receive harder questions, while if they're performing poorly, the questions will get easier.  

Officials hope the progress test, or MAP, can provide more accurate student metrics as it’s given several times per year. 

City of Freeport, IL

Freeport’s mayor and council are at odds over the city’s legal department. Mayor Jim Gitz on Monday vetoed a council measure to end the department and outsource its services.

Mayor Gitz says the Council did not give a good explanation of why the measure was a good idea, or even why it was needed.   According to the Freeport Journal-Standard, Gitz also says the ordinance was being used to interfere with the work of the mayor.  

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