HOME RULE CHARTER

 

 

The Efficient Government and Taxes Task Force of Scranton Tomorrow has created this reproduction using a certified copy
of the City of Scranton Home Rule Charter and Administrative Code filed in the Marywood University Reference Department on March 1977.

Copies of the Home Rule Charter and Administrative Code can also be found in the Reference Departments
of the University of Scranton, Lackawanna Junior College, The Scranton Public Library and Scranton City Hall.

Special Note:  All errors in bold print are actual typographical errors in the Home Rule Charter and Administrative Code.  What has not been noted are the inconsistencies of the words Charter and charter, Council and council, President and president, etc.  Also what has not been noted is the reference to Mayor, Councilperson, Administrator and Controller only as he.

The last page of the Administrative Code reads as follows, showing that the Charter referendum passed by only 196 votes in 1974.

SCRANTON CITY HOME RULE REFERENDUM VOTED ON IN THE PRIMARY ELECTION HELD TUESDAY, MAY 21, 1974 WAS PASSED WITH THE FOLLOWING RESULTS:

YES 5,462
NO 5,266

CERTIFIED BY JAMES J. DECKER, CHIEF CLERK LACKAWANNA COUNTY BOARD OF ELECTIONS

PREAMBLE

 
ARTICLE I
NAMES AND BOUNDARIES
Section 101 . Names and Boundaries
ARTICLE II
POWERS OF THE CITY GOVERNMENT
Section 201 . Governing Body
Section 202 . Division of Powers . General
Section 203 . Allocation of Certain Powers and Duties
Section 204 . Powers of the City Government
Section 205 . Intergovernmental Relations
Section 206 . Eminent Domain

ARTICLE III
COUNCIL

 

Section 301 . Composition
Section 302 . Terms
Section 303 . Election and Election Procedures
Section 304 . Salary
Section 305 . Qualifications
Section 306 . Authority
Section 307 . Prohibitions
Section 308 . Vacancies
Section 309 . Filing of Vacancies
Section 310 . Organization of Council
Section 311 . Oath of Office
Section 312 . Investigations
Section 313 . Annual Independent Post Audit

ARTICLE IV
OPERATION AND PROCEDURES OF 
CITY COUNCIL
Section 401 . Meetings
Section 402 . Quorum
Section 403 . Records
Section 404 . Majority Action
Section 405 . Operating Rules
Section 406 . City Clerk
Section 407 . Citizens Right to be Heard

ARTICLE V
ORDINANCES AND RESOLUTIONS

 

Section 501 . Form of Action by Council
Section 502 . Action Requiring an Ordinance
Section 503 . General Ordinance Procedures
Section 504 .
Section 505 . Codification
ARTICLE VI
EXECUTIVE BRANCH

Section 601 . Composition
Section 602 . Election and Term
Section 603. Salary
Section 604 . Qualifications
Section 605 . Prohibitions
Section 606 . Vacancies
Section 607 . Filling of Vacancies
Section 608 . Oath of Office
Section 609 . Powers and Authority
Section 610 . Executive organization

ARTICLE VII
CITY CONTROLLER

Section 701 . Terms and Qualifications
Section 702 .
Section 703 . Vacancy
Section 704 . Powers and Duties of the City Controller
ARTICLE VIII
PERSONNEL SYSTEM
Section 801 . Personnel System
Section 802 . Testing and Appointment Procedures
ARTICLE IX
BUDGET AND FISCAL MATTERS
Section 901 . Fiscal year and Budgetary Process
Section 902 . Budget Message
Section 903 . Budget
Section 904 . Capital Budget
Section 905 . Council Action on Budget
Section 906 . Council Action on Capital Budget
Section 907 . Tax Levy
Section 908 . Public Records
Section 909 . Amendments after Adoption
Section 910 . Lapse of Appropriations
Section 911 . Administration of the Budget
Section 912 . Payment of Funds
Section 913 . Fidelity Bonds

ARTICLE X
INITIATIVE AND REFERENDUM

 

 

Section 1001 . General Authority
Section 1002 . Commencement of Proceedings: Petitioners. Committee, Affidavit
Section 1003 . Petitions
Section 1004 . Procedure After Filing
Section 1005 . Referendum petitions; Suspension of Effect of an Ordinance
Section 1006 . Action on Petitions
Section 1007 . Results of Election

ARTICLE XI
GENERAL PROVISIONS

Section 1101 . Amendment Procedures
Section 1102 . Election Procedures
Section 1103 . Code of Ethics
Section 1104 . General Laws
Section 1105 . Gifts of Donations

ARTICLE XII
CONTRACTS

Section 1201 . Contracts

ARTICLE XIII
TRANSITIONAL PROVISIONS

 

Section 1301 . Administrative Code
Section 1302 . Elected Officials
Section 1303 . Continuation.
Section 1304 . Salaries

ARTICLE XIV
SEVERABILITY

Section 1401 . Constitutional Construction

ARTICLE XV
EFFECTIVE DATE

Section 1501 . Effective Date

PREAMBLE

WE, THE PEOPLE, OF THE CITY OF SCRANTON, IN ADOPTING THIS HOME RULE CHARTER, RECOGNIZE THAT GOVERNMENT IS COMPETENT ONLY WHEN THOSE WHO COMPOSE IT WORK AS TRUSTEES OF THE PEOPLE. AS A SERVANT OF THE PEOPLE, GOOD GOVERNMENT MUST BE RESPONSIVE TO THEIR BASIC HUMAN NEEDS. THEREFORE TO SECURE THESE GOALS THIS CHARTER IS ORDAINED AN ESTABLISHED.

ARTICLE I

NAMES AND BOUNDARIES

Section 101 - Names and Boundaries

The City of Scranton shall continue to be a municipal corporation under its present name, "City of Scranton". As used in this charter, the word "city" shall mean the City of Scranton in Lackawanna County, created pursuant to an Act of the Pennsylvania Legislature on April 23, 1866.

ARTICLE II

POWERS OF THE CITY GOVERNMENT

Section 201 . Governing Body

The Mayor and council jointly shall be the governing body of Scranton City Government.

Section 202 . Division of Powers . General

The powers of the city government shall be divided among the executive and legislative branches of the city government. Power belonging to one branch of the government shall not be exercised by the other branch, except as expressly provided in this charter.

Section 203 . Allocation of Certain Powers and Duties

Where the city government has any power or duty and the responsibility for the exercise of such power or the performance of such duty is not fixed by this charter or by general law or special law, the power or duty shall be exercised or performed as follows: All powers and duties of the city government which are legislative in nature shall be exercised and performed by the council. All powers and duties which are executive in nature shall be exercised or performed by the Mayor or such other executive officer of the city government as the Mayor may designate except as otherwise specifically provided herein. In the event the nature of any power or duty is uncertain, or the law creating such power or duty requires cooperation between branches of the city government, the president of council and the mayor shall fix the responsibility for the exercise of such power or the performance of such duty.

Section 204 . Powers of the City Government

The governing body of the City of Scranton shall exercise all powers which may now or hereafter be
possible for a municipal corporation in this state to exercise except as may be limited by this charter. This Charter shall be construed liberally in favor of the City of Scranton and the specific mention of particular powers in this Charter shall not be construed as limiting in any way the generality of the power herein sought to be conferred.

Section 205 . Intergovernmental Relations

The city of Scranton shall have the power to enter into intergovernmental cooperative arrangements as shall be provided under existing law.

Section 206 . Eminent Domain

The City of Scranton may acquire by purchase, gift, devise, or condemnation any property which may be needed by the City of Scranton for any public use or purpose according to proceedings set forth in Pennsylvania Eminent Domain-Code.

ARTICLE III

COUNCIL

Section 301 . Composition

There shall be a City Council of five (5) members, nominated and elected by the qualified voters of the City at large. Another two (2) councilpersons shall be elected at the municipal election immediately following the certification of any census figures indicating that the population of the City of Scranton has increased by at least 35,000 over the census figures of 1970.

Section 302 . Terms

The terms of all councilpersons shall be for four (4) years commencing noon on the first Monday of January following the year in which they are elected, except that a councilperson appointed to fill a vacancy shall serve from the date of his appointment until the next general election if more than fifty (50) percent of the unexpired term remains. In all other instances the appointment shall be for the unexpired term.

Section 303 . Election and Election Procedures

The regular election of councilpersons shall be held on the general municipal election day as established
from time to time by the laws of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. The procedure for nomination and election of councilpersons shall be established by the general laws of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania
for municipal elections.

Section 304 . Salary

Each councilperson shall receive such a salary as Council shall from time to time ordain. No salary increase shall become effective until the date of commencement of the terms of councilpersons elected at the next regular election after such salary increase, provided that such election follows the adoption of such
ordinance by at least six months. Councilpersons shall receive no other such compensation, direct or indirect, for the performance of their duties. They shall be entitled to actual expenses incurred in the performance to their duties.

Section 305 . Qualifications

A Councilperson shall be a citizen of the United States, shall have been a resident of the City for at lease one (1) year prior to the date of his election: shall be at least the minimum voting age at the time of his nomination; and shall reside in the City of Scranton throughout his term of service.

Section 306 . Authority

Council shall deal with all administrative agencies and employees only as a body through the Mayor. No individual councilperson shall have any authority whatsoever under this Charter unless such authority is specifically delegated by the charter or by the Council acting as a body.

Section 307 . Prohibitions

No councilperson shall hold any other compensated city office or employment during the term for which he is elected to council and no former councilperson shall hold any compensated appointive city office of employment, nor shall he act as a paid consultant to the City until one (1) year after the expiration of the term for which he was elected to Council.

Section 308 . Vacancies

The office of councilpersons shall become vacant upon his death, resignation, removal from office, failure to assume such office within thirty 930) days after commencement of the term or in any manner authorized by law or by this charter. A councilperson shall forfeit his office if he lacks at any time during his term of office any qualifications for the office prescribed in this Charter or by law or is convicted of a felony or a crime in violation of public trust or is found in violation of the Code of Ethics by Council.

Section 309 . Filing of Vacancies

If a vacancy exists in the city council, the city council shall, as provided in the administrative code, fill such vacancy, within thirty (30) days thereafter, by electing a qualified person to serve until the first Monday of January when his successor who shall have been elected by the qualified electors at the next municipal election, is duly sworn into office for the remainder of the term of the person originally elected to said office. If, at any time, vacancies should occur or exist in the membership of all members of city council, the court of common pleas shall appoint a city council, of persons properly qualified, who shall serve as herein provided.

Section 310 . Organization of Council

The City Council shall meet at such times and places as shall be designated in the Administrative Code. The Council shall meet to organize on the first Monday in January following the municipal election. At this time, the City Council shall elect, from among its members, officers who shall have the titles of President and Vice President, whom shall server for a two (2) year term. The president shall preside at meetings of the Council and perform such other functions as may be assigned by the charter, or ordinance or by vote of the City Council. The vice-president shall act as president during the absence or disability of the president.

Section 311 . Oath of Office

Councilpersons prior to assuming office, shall take and shall sign an oath of office as shall from time to time be prescribed by the laws of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. Such oath may be taken and signed before a judge, district magistrate, or notary public of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, and no person shall be permitted to assume office until the oath, in written form, is filled with the City Clerk.

Section 312 . Investigations

The Council may make investigations into the affairs of the City and the conduct of any department, office,
or agency in aid of its legislative powers and functions, and may issue subpoenas for these purposes.

Section 313 . Annual Independent Post Audit

Council shall provide for an independent audit of all city revenue and accounts by a certified public accountant who has no private interest in the fiscal affairs of the city government or any of its elected or appointed officers. Council may provide for more frequent audits, as well as, special audits, as it deems necessary and said special audits shall be conducted by a certified public accountant. The complete annual audit shall be submitted to City Council who shall conform to existing legislation. A summary of the fiscal affairs shall be published in the local newspapers by May 31 of each year.

ARTICLE IV

OPERATION AND PROCEDURES OF CITY COUNCIL

Section 401 . Meetings

The Council shall meet once a week in regular sessions in regular council chambers. It shall meet at such times and places as the council may prescribe by rule. Council may adjourn to a stated time for general business or special business. If no quorum is present at a regular meeting a majority of those who do meet may agree until the meeting is held. Special meetings may be called by the President of Council or upon written request of at least one-third of the members thereof. A minimum of 24 hours legal notice of such meetings shall be necessary. Council may recess for the purpose of discussing in a closed or executive session limited to its own membership any matter which would tend to defame or prejudice the character or reputation of any person, provided that the general subject matter for consideration is expressed in the motion calling for such session and that final action thereon shall not be taken by the Council until the matter is placed on the agenda.

Section 402 . Quorum

A majority of the whole body of Council shall constitute a quorum. Council shall conduct no business except in the presence of a quorum.

Section 403 . Records

Council shall make and preserve minutes and record of its proceedings. These records shall be open for public inspection during reasonable hours.

Section 404 . Majority Action

The action of a majority of the Councilpersons present and entitled to vote, unless otherwise stated in this Charter, shall be binding upon and constitute the action of the Council.

Section 405 . Operating Rules

The Council shall be resolution determine its own rules and order of business. Voting shall be by roll call except on procedural matters and the ayes and nays shall be recorded in the minutes. At least twenty-four (24) hours before any regular meeting of Council, an agenda containing all items which are scheduled to come before it at the meeting shall be publicly posted. No action taken on a matter not included in the posted agenda shall be effective unless the body firsts adopts by special vote a resolution that an emergency exists and that the particular matter must be acted upon at a meeting for the peace, health, safety or convenience of the city.

Section 406 . City Clerk

The Council shall appoint at its biennial reorganization meeting an officer of the city who shall have the title of City Clerk. The City Clerk shall give notice of council meetings to its members and the public, keep the journal of its proceedings and perform such other duties as are assigned to him by this charter or by council.

Section 407 . Citizens Right to be Heard

Reasonable opportunity shall be provided for citizens and taxpayers to address Council on agenda matters before a vote is taken. Procedures for citizens participation shall be determined by Council.

ARTICLE V

ORDINANCES AND RESOLUTIONS

Section 501 . Form of Action by Council

Official actions of Council may be taken by adoption of an ordinance, resolution or motion. All ordinances and resolutions must be in written form. All action of a legislative character shall be taken by ordinance. All other actions of a legislative character shall be taken by ordinance. All other actions of Council shall be by resolution or motion unless otherwise required in this Charter. All final action in adopting ordinances or resolutions shall be by vote of a majority of all members of Council by roll call and shall be entered in the minutes of the meeting. An extraordinary majority of Council shall be necessary to override the mayor. s veto.

Section 502 . Action Requiring an Ordinance

In addition to other acts required by law or by specific provision of this charter to be done by ordinance, those acts of the City Council shall be by ordinance which:

    1. Adopt or amend an administrative code or establish, alter, or abolish any city department office, or agency.

    2. Adopt or amend a code establishing a personnel system for the city.

    3. Provide for a fine or other penalty or establish a rule or regulation for violation of which a fine
      or other penalty is imposed.

    4. Levy and collect taxes.

    5. Grant, renew, or extend a franchise.

    6. Regulate the rate charges for its services by a municipally owned public utility.

    7. Authorize the borrowing of money

    8. Convey or lease or authorize the conveyance or lease of any lands of the city.

    9. Amend or repeal any ordinance previously adopted unless proposed by initiative or referendum.

    10. Provide for the enactment, amendment, and implementation of any Housing, Plumbing,
      Electrical Zoning or Inspection Codes.

    11. Establish and regulate any revenue producing municipal enterprises.

    12. Adoption of a budget which shall include clear statement of wages, hours, and fringe benefits
      to be established as conditions for employment of all employees of the City.

    13. Supplemental appropriations so long as adequate revenue is available.

    14. Revision of taxing system.

    15. Meet a public emergency affecting life, health property or the public peace.

    16. Enact legislation which shall establish the basis for taxation on real estate within the City of Scranton.

    17. Merger and consolidations may be initiated by Mayor and Council. However, final approval must be by referendum.

Section 503 . General Ordinance Procedures

Every ordinance shall:

    1. be limited to one subject matter which shall be clearly expressed in its title.

    2. contain an enacting clause.

    3. be published by summary title following the first reading at least once in a newspaper
      of general circulation within the City.

    4. become effective within thirty (30) days of adoption unless otherwise determined by this charter or law.

    5. authenticated and entered in an ordinance book.

Section 504 .

No ordinance or resolution shall become effective until it has been sighed by the Mayor or passed by an extraordinary majority of the Council over the Mayor. s veto. Subsequent to the final passage of any ordinance or resolution by the Council, it shall be forwarded by the City Clerk to the Mayor for his signature. The Mayor shall have a ten (10) day period in which to sign or veto the ordinance. If the Mayor does not sign an ordinance within that then (10) day period it shall become effective and his approval shall be assumed. If the Mayor chooses to veto an ordinance within the ten (10) day period. He shall return the ordinance to the City Clerk within the ten (10) day period together with a written veto message indicating the reasons for his vet. The ordinance or resolution shall be placed on the next regularly scheduled meeting of Council after receipt of the Mayor. s veto message and the question of passage of the ordinance or resolution over the Mayor. s veto shall be considered at that meeting.

Section 505 . Codification

One year following the adoption of this Charter and annually thereafter, the Council shall provide for the preparation of a general codification of all city ordinances and resolutions having the force and effect of law.

ARTICLE VI

EXECUTIVE BRANCH

Section 601 . composition

The executive branch shall consist of a Mayor and as many departments as he shall recommend
be ordained and established with the approval of City Council.

Section 602 . Election and Term

The Mayor shall be elected at large by the qualified electors of the City of Scranton in conformity with the procedures for nomination and election of the Mayor as established by the general laws of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania for municipal elections. The term of office shall be four years commencing at noon on the first Monday of January following the year in which he is elected and ending at the commencement of the term for which his successor is elected, except that a mayor appointed to fill a vacancy shall follow procedures stated in Article III . Section 309.

Section 603. Salary

The Mayor shall receive a salary as recommended by Council and outlined in the Administrative Code.

Section 604 . Qualifications

The Mayor shall be a citizen of the United States, a resident of the city and a qualified voter for at least one year prior to his election and shall reside in the City of Scranton throughout his term of service.

Section 605 . Prohibitions

The Mayor shall not hold any other compensated city office or employment during the term for which he is elected as Mayor, and no former Mayor shall hold any compensated appointive city office or employment nor shall he act as paid consultant to the City until one year following the expiration of the term for which he is elected as Mayor.

Section 606 . Vacancies

The Office of Mayor shall become vacant upon his death, resignation, removal, forfeiture of his office, or failure to assume such office within thirty (30) days after the commencement of the term thereof. The Mayor shall forfeit his office if he lacks at any time during his term of office any qualifications prescribed by this charter or by law or convicted of a felony, or a crime in violation of public trust or is found in violation of the Code of Ethics by Council.

Section 607 . Filling of Vacancies

Should a vacancy occur in the office of Mayor, the City Council shall fill such vacancy within thirty (30) days and in the ensuing period the President of Council shall serve as Acting Mayor. If by reason of a tie vote or otherwise, a vacancy in the office of Mayor shall not have been filled by the Council within the time as limited herein, the Court of Common Pleas shall fill such vacancy by appointment of a qualified person for the porting of the unexpired term as herein provided.

Section 608 . Oath of Office

The Mayor, prior to assuming office, shall take and shall sigh an oath of office as prescribed by the laws of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania,. Such oath may be taken and signed before any judge, district magistrate, or notary public of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, and no person shall be permitted to assume such office until the oath is filled with the city in written form.

Section 609 . Powers and Authority

The Mayor shall have the following specific powers, duties, and authority,

    1. all the normal powers that traditionally accrue to executive authority.

    2. full charge and control of all executive departments in the city.

    3. appoint a deputy mayor who may act as Mayor only in the event the Mayor cannot fulfill his duties
      due to illness or temporary absence from the city.

    4. the power to veto ordinances and resolutions except those affecting the internal operations of council.

    5. prescribe order in the city.

    6. enforce ordinances and regulations in the city.

    7. the duty to sign such papers, contracts, obligations, documents that are properly presented to him,
      as required by law.

    8. report to the citizenry and Council from time to time regarding the state of affairs of the city.

    9. represent the city in deliberations with intergovernmental bodies.

    10. subject to any ordinance of the city establishing standards for appointment, promotion, or discharge
      of employees, he shall have the power to designate promote or discharge all city employees except
      those controlled by Civil Services.

    11. power to suspend, with or without pay, all executive department employees.

    12. authority to negotiate intergovernmental agreements with the approval of Council.

    13. draft and propose a budget.

    14. authorize to appoint and dissolve voluntary committees of interested citizens to assist and advise
      him on all issues and matters pertaining to his office.

    15. authority to appoint, suspend, and remove members of his own staff as may be authorized in the budget.

    16. enforce any emergency powers that Council may establish by ordinance to preserve health, welfare,
      and safety of the citizenry.

    17. negotiate contracts.

    18. execute all contracts authorized by Council.

Section 610 . Executive organization

In the executive branch there shall be established a Department of Administration. A Department of Public Safety, a Department
of Public Works, a Department of Community Development and a Department of Law. There is hereby established the position of "Business Administrator" which position shall be filled by appointment of the Mayor with the advice and consent of Council by an individual who shall be chosen solely on the basis of his executive and administrative qualifications with special reference to his training and/or experience in municipal management. The Business Administrator shall be responsible for assisting the Mayor
and the operating departments. The Business Administrator shall make periodic reports with recommendations to the Mayor on
the affairs of the City Government.

The heads of the various departments report to the Business Administrator, who in turn shall be accountable to the Mayor,. The Business Administrator shall also be the director of a Department of Administration which shall be established and maintained
in the administrative structure of the City of Scranton. The Department of Administration, under the direction of the Business Administrator, shall have the following responsibilities:

    1. Assisting the Mayor in the preparation of the annual budget.

    2. Administration of the annual budget once it is adopted by the Council including the installation of quarterly allotments within each department.

    3. Administration of a centralized purchasing system.

    4. Establishment and administration of a centralized personnel system.

    5. Management of the property of the City.

    6. The development and administration of a system of performance reporting and such other management
      and administrative responsibilities as may be assigned to it from time to time by the Mayor or the Council.

ARTICLE VII

CITY CONTROLLER

Section 701 . Terms and Qualifications

The City controller shall be elected for a term of four years and until his successor qualifies at the municipal election of 1975
and four years thereafter, said term to begin on the first Monday of January following his election. He shall be a qualified voter
of the City of Scranton for at least one year to his nomination. He shall reside in the city throughout his term of service.

Section 702 .

The controller shall appoint a deputy controller, preferably an accountant, and may also appoint such employees of his office
in such number and at such compensation as is fixed in accordance with law. In all other respects said employees shall be considered employees of the city.

Section 703 . Vacancy

Should a vacancy exist in the office of the Controller, the Deputy Controller shall succeed to the office and duties until the next municipal election.

Section 704 . Powers and Duties of the City Controller

  1. Maintain accounting systems for the city government, in accordance with generally recognized governmental accounting principles and procedures, keeping accounting records and exercising financial and budgeting controls.

  2. Prescribe the accounts to be kept by the city government, the form or receipts, vouchers, bills or claims, warrants, requisitions, purchase orders or any financial stationery to be used, and provide suitable instructions thereof.

  3. Prescribe the times and the manner in which moneys received by the city government shall either be paid to the treasurer or deposited in a bank account to the credit of the city government.

  4. Examine all contracts, purchase orders and other documents which would result in or involve financial obligations
    against the city government, and approve the same only upon ascertaining that there is an unexpended, unencumbered
    or unimpounded balance in each appropriation and allotment to which they are applicable sufficient to cover such
    potential obligations.

  5. Audit before payment all bills, invoices, payrolls and other claims, demands or charges against the city government
    and approve the same only if duly authorized by appropriations or allotments or appropriations.

  6. Submit a monthly financial report to the Mayor and City Council, showing the financial conditions of various funds of the
    city government, as well as, the condition of all items included in the adopted annual operating budget, including estimated revenues, revenues received, appropriations and allotments for such appropriations.

  7. Submit a report to the Mayor and to Council, at the time of the meeting of Council preceding the first Monday in April of
    each year, of the audits which he shall have made of the accounts of the preceding fiscal year of all officers having charge, custody and control or disbursement of public monies and other funds, and at the same time he shall file a copy of said report with the Court of Common Pleas. Appeals there from may be take as provided by general law. A summary of said report shall be prepared by the City Controller and posted in the center hall of the main entrance of City Hall.

  8. The City Controller shall have the power to administer oaths or affirmations in relation to any matter touching
    authentication of any account, claim or demand of or against the city; and he shall have the power to issue subpoenas to obtain the attendance of any officers of the city or elsewhere whose accounts he is required or authorized to adjust audit, and settle and of any person whom it may be necessary to examine as a witness in connection therewith. Any city officer refusing to appear upon being subpoenaed shall be subject to removal from office by the Mayor for such refusal; and any person, including a city officer, willfully refusing to appear upon being subpoenaed, without sufficient cause therefore, shall upon conviction thereof, be sentenced to pay a fine not exceeding two hundred ($200.00) and costs of prosecution and, in default of payment of said fine and costs, to undergo imprisonment in the Lackawanna County jail for a period not exceeding sixty (60) days.

  9. All bonds, notes, contracts, and written obligations of the city shall be executed by the controller together with the Mayor.

  10. The city controller shall give bonds to the city, as required by general law,
    in a sum fixed by council at the time a controller assumes office.

Per Ordinance#17 in February, 1993, the following question was added to the May, 1993 ballot: SHALL THE HOME RULE CHARTER, ARTICLE VII, SECTION 704, BE AMENDED TO CONFER ADDITIONAL POWERS AND DUTIES, SPECIFICALLY
THE POWER TO AUDIT, SERVICE DELIVERY, COST ANALYSIS, UPON THE CONTROLLER FO THE CITY OF SCRANTON? 
This amendment was approved by the voters and implemented by the City.

Per Ordinance#18 in February, 1993, the following question was added to the May, 1993 ballot: SHALL THE HOME RULE CHARTER OF THE CITY OF SCRANTON BE AMENDED TO DELETE, ARTICLE VII, SECTION 704(1), SECTION 704(2), AND SECTION 704(3), THOSE DUTIES AND POWERS CURRENTLY NOT PERFORMED BY THE CITY CONTROLLER OF THE
CITY OF SCRANTON? 
This amendment was approved by the voters and implemented by the City.

ARTICLE VIII

PERSONNEL SYSTEM

Section 801 . Personnel System

Employment promotion and discharge of all person from full-time positions of employment with the city shall be accomplished through a merit personnel system which shall be based on fitness for the position demonstrated by examination or other evidence of competence. The Business Administrator and the Department of Administration shall develop appropriate measures of competence for all positions within the city. s employment. These measures or tests must be approved by the Mayor and Civil Service Commission of the city, which is hereby charges with the responsibility of approving the tests or measures of competence for all city positions and for hearing appeals from individuals who claim that employment or promotion has been awarded to other than qualified individuals. Individuals who are employed or promoted to positions in the city service on the basis of the above mentioned tests or measures of competence shall retain that position with the city service and shall not be removed, demoted, disciplined, or discharged except for just cause. Individuals removed, demoted, disciplined, or discharged from their positions
shall have the right to appeal the question of just cause to the Civil Service Commission of the City. The decision of the Civil
Service Commission on any appeals shall be final and binding on the individual and the Mayor and the Administration of the City.

Section 802 . Testing and Appointment Procedures

Examinations and measures of competence for full-time employment positions may include, but not be limited to, any or all of the following: physical examination, psychological examination, demonstrations or physical dexterity, demonstrations of physical ability to perform specific tasks, and written or oral examinations. To the extent feasible, the identity of individuals being examined shall be shielded from the examiner until after the individual has been rated on that section of the examination. Each vacant full-time position shall be broadly advertised for a period of at least ten working days by posting notice of the vacancy on bulletin boards at city work locations and by advertising the vacancy in at least one newspaper of general circulation in the City. Interested individuals may apply for the vacant position and shall then be tested competitively utilizing the examinations and other measures of competence developed by the Business Administrator and approved by the mayor and the Civil Service Commission. Individuals shall compete and shall be graded on each examination or measure of competence approved for the position. The Civil Service Commission shall finally assign a composite grade to each individual competing for the position and shall certify the three individuals receiving the highest grades to the Mayor for his consideration. The Mayor may appoint anyone of the three top graded individuals to the vacant position. Individuals who have been certified by the Civil Service Commission to the Mayor and who have not been appointed by the Mayor shall be recertified by the Commission for the next vacant position of a similar type and level which occurs within the city service.

ARTICLE IX

BUDGET AND FISCAL MATTERS

Section 901 . Fiscal year and Budgetary Process

The fiscal year of the City of Scranton shall commence on January 1 and end on December 31. The preparation of the annual operating budget shall commence no later than September 15 for the subsequent budget year.

Section 902 . Budget Message

By no later than November 15 of each fiscal year, the Mayor shall submit to Council a budget and accompanying message which shall explain the budget in fiscal terms and interims of programs and services. It shall outline the proposed financial policies of the city for the ensuing year, describe the important features of the budget, indicate any major changes from the current year in financial policies, expenditures and revenue, together with the reason for such changes, summarize the city. s debt position and include such other material as the Mayor deems desirable.

Section 903 . Budget

The Budget shall contain:

    1. general summary of its contents.

    2. all estimated income, indicating the existing and proposed tax levies, as well as, assessments, fees and charges.

    3. all proposed expenditures, including debt service for the ensuing year.

    4. the number of proposed employees in every job classification.

    5. comparative figures for estimated or actual income expenditures for current fiscal year and actual income
      and expenditures of the preceding fiscal year.

    6. proposed expenditures for the ensuing fiscal year detailed by offices, departments, agencies, in terms of their respective work programs and methods of financing such expenditures.

    7. proposed capital expenditures during the ensuing fiscal year, detailed by offices, departments,
      and agencies when practicable, and the proposed method of financing such capital expenditures.

The total of proposed expenditures shall not exceed the total estimated funds available.

Section 904 . Capital Budget

The Mayor shall submit to the Council the first five year capital budget after adoption of the charter, initially at least nine months prior to the final date for the submission of the Budget. In all subsequent years, it shall be submitted to the Council at least three months prior to the final date for the submission of the budget. The capital budget shall contain:

    1. summary of its contents.

    2. list of all capital improvements which are proposed to be undertaken during the five fiscal years ensuing with appropriate supporting information as to the necessity for such improvements.

    3. cost estimated, method of financing, and recommended time schedules for such improvements.

    4. estimated annual cost of operating and maintaining the facilities to be constructed or acquired.

    5. inventory replacement schedule for purchase and replacement of major equipment.

The above information may be revised and extended each year with regard to capital improvements still pending or in process of construction or acquisition.

Section 905 . Council Action on Budget

The Council shall publish in one or more newspapers of general circulation in the city a summary of the budget and a notice stating the times where the budget is available for public inspection. A public hearing shall take place no later than December 1 of the fiscal year. After the public hearing the Council may adopt the budget with or without amendment. In amending the Budget, the council may delete, increase, or decrease programs or amounts, except for expenditures required by law or for debt service. Should a change in a program or budgetary item exceed 10 per cent of the Mayor. s recommended budget, another public hearing must take place within 72 hours to justify said change. In no case can an amendment increase authorized expenditures to an amount greater than the total estimated funds available. The Council must adopt an annual budget by no later than December 15 of the fiscal year currently ending. If Council fails to adopt a budget by December 15, then the Mayor. s proposed budget shall become the official budget for the city for the ensuing fiscal year.

Section 906 . Council Action on Capital Budget

The Council shall publish in one or more newspapers of general circulation in the City a general summary of the capital budget and a notice stating the times and places where copies of the capital budget are available for public inspection. Within two weeks after such publication, a public hearing shall take place on the capital budget. The Council shall adopt a Capital budget with or without amendments after the public hearing but no later than December 15 of the current fiscal year.

Section 907 . Tax Levy

Immediately after the adoption of the budget, Council shall by ordinance set the tax rates and levy on various subjects of taxation.

Section 908 . Public Records

Copies of the budget and capital program shall be made part of the public records and shall be made available
to the public for inspection.

Section 909 . Amendments after Adoption

Supplemental, emergency and transfer appropriations should be defined in the Administrative Code. Should a deficit develop
the Mayor shall make recommendations to minimize the deficit and for that purpose Council ma reduce other appropriations.
No appropriation for debt service may be reduced or transferred to resolve this deficit.

Section 910 . Lapse of Appropriations

Every appropriation, except for capital expenditures, shall lapse at the close of the fiscal year to the extent that it has not been expended or encumbered. An appropriation for a capital expenditure shall continue in force until the purpose for which it was
made has been accomplished, but if three years pass without any disbursement from or encumbrance of the appropriation,
the appropriation shall lapse.

Section 911 . Administration of the Budget

The Business Administrator shall supervise the administration of each annual budget. He shall utilize modern management practice for the operation of the budget. Immediately after the budget has been enacted and after consultation with the heads of
the departments the Business Administrator shall establish quarterly or such other periodic allotments of appropriations to each department. At the beginning of each allotment period, the amount specified shall become available to each department for obligations during that period. Such allotments for any department may be modified upon request of the head of the department, by the Business Administrator, or by direction of the Mayor. The Business Administrator shall file with the President of Council a copy of each allotment and modification thereof. An encumbrance system of accounts to control expenditures within the limits of the budget appropriation and the control of such allotments shall be maintained by the Department of Administration.

Section 912 . Payment of Funds

The payment of city funds shall not be made unless specifically provided for in the budget
and specifically authorized by the Controller.

Section 913 . Fidelity Bonds

Before entering upon the duties of their offices or positions, all executive branch personnel shall execute
and file with the City, corporate surety bonds conditioned to honest and faithful performance of their respective duties.

ARTICLE X

INITIATIVE AND REFERENDUM

Section 1001 . General Authority

    1. Initiative . The qualified voters of the city shall have power to propose ordinances to the council, and if the council fails to adopt an ordinance so proposed without any change in substance, to adopt or reject it at a city election, provided that such power shall not extend to the budget or capital program or any ordinance relating to appropriation of money, levy of taxes or salaries of city officers or employees.

    2. Referendum . The qualified voters of the city shall have power to require reconsideration by the council of any adopted ordinance and, if the council fails to repeal an ordinance so reconsidered, to approve or reject it at a city election, provided that such power shall not extend to the budget or capital program or any emergency ordinances
      or ordinance relating to appropriation of money or levy of taxes.

Section 1002 . Commencement of Proceedings:

Petitioners. Committee, Affidavit

Any five qualified voters may commence initiative or referendum proceedings by filing with the City Clerk an affidavit stating they will constitute the petitioners. committee and be responsible for circulating the petition and filing it in proper form, stating their names and addresses and specifying the address to which all notices to the committee are to be sent, and setting out in full the proposed initiative ordinance or citing the ordinance sought to be reconsidered. Promptly after the affidavit of the petitioners. committee is filed the clerk shall issue the appropriate petition blanks to the petitioners. committee.

Section 1003 . Petitions

    1. Number of Signatures . Initiative and referendum petitions must be signed by qualified voters of the city equal in number to at least fifteen 915) per cent of all votes cast for all candidates for Mayor at the last mayoralty election.

    2. Form and Content . All papers of a petition shall be uniform in size and style and shall be assembled as one instrument for filing. Each signature shall be executed in ink or indelible pencil and shall be followed by the address of the person signing. Petitions shall contain or have attached thereto throughout their circulation the full text of the ordinance proposed or sought to be reconsidered.

    3. Affidavit of Circulator . Each paper of a petition shall have attached to it when filed an affidavit executed by the circulator thereof stating that he personally circulated the paper, the number of signatures thereon, that all the signatures were affixed in his presence, that he believes them to be the genuine signatures of the person whose names they support to be and that each signer had an opportunity before signing to read the full text of the ordinances proposed or sought to be reconsidered.

    4. Time for Filing Referendum Petitions . Referendum petitions must be filed within thirty (30) days after the ordinance becomes law.

Section 1004 . Procedure After Filing

    1. Certificate of Clerk; Amendment . Within twenty days after the petition is filed, the city clerk shall complete a certificate as to its sufficiency, specifying, if it is insufficient, the particulars wherein it is defective and shall promptly send a copy of the petition certified insufficient for lack of the required number of valid signatures may be amended once if the petitioners. committee files a notice of intention to amend it with the clerk within two days after receiving the copy of his certificate and files a supplementary petition upon additional papers within ten days after receiving the copy of such certificate. Such supplementary petition shall comply with the requirements of subsections (2) and (3) of Section 1003, and within five days after it is filed the clerk shall complete a certificate as to the sufficiency of the petition as amended and promptly send a copy of such certificate to the petitioners. committee by registered mail as in the case of the original petition. If a petition or amended petition is certified insufficient and the petitioners. committee does not elect to amend or request council review under subsection (2) of this section within the time required, the clerk shall promptly present his certificate to the council and the certificate shall then be a final determination as to the sufficiency of the petition.

    2. Council Review . If a petition has been certified insufficient and the petitioners. committee does not file notice of intention to amend it and if an amended petition has been certified insufficient, the committee may, within two days after receiving the copy of such certificate, file a request that it be reviewed by the Council. The Council shall review the certificate at its next meeting following the filing of such request and approve or disapprove it, and the council. s determination shall be final determination as to the sufficiency of the petition.

    3. Court Review; New Petition . A final determination as to the insufficiency of a petition shall be subject to court review. A final determination of insufficiency, even if sustained upon court review shall not prejudice the filing of a new petition for the same purpose.

Section 1005 . Referendum petitions; Suspension of Effect of an ordinance

When a referendum petition is filed with the city clerk, the ordinance sought to be reconsidered shall be suspended from taking effect. Such suspension shall terminate when:

    1. there is a final determination of insufficiency of a petition or

    2. the petitioners. committee withdraws the petition, or

    3. the council repeals the ordinance or

    4. thirty days have elapsed after a vote of the city on the ordinance.

Section 1006 . Action on Petitions

    1. Action by Council . When an initiative or referendum petition has been finally determined sufficient, the council shall promptly consider the proposed initiative ordinance in the manner provided in Article II or reconsider the referred ordinance by costing its repeal. If the council fails to adopt a proposed initiative ordinance without any change in substance within sixty (60) days or fails to repeal the referred ordinance within thirty (30) days after the date the petition was finally determined sufficient, it shall submit the proposed or referred ordinance to the voters of the city.

    2. Submission to Voters . The vote of the city on a proposed or referred ordinance shall be held not less than thirty (30) days and not later than one year from the date of the final council vote thereon. If no regular city election is to be held within the period prescribed in this subsection, the council shall provide for a special election; otherwise, the vote shall be held at the same time as such regular election, except that the council may in its discretion provide for a special election at an earlier date within the prescribed period. Copies of the proposed or referred ordinance shall be made available at the polls.

    3. Withdrawal of Petition . An initiative or referendum petition may be withdrawn at any time prior to the fifteenth day by four members of the petitioners. committee. Upon the filing of such request the petition shall have no further force or effect and all proceedings thereon shall be terminated.

Section 1007 . Results of Election

    1. Initiative . If a majority of the qualified electors voting on a proposed initiative ordinance vote in its favor, it shall be considered adopted upon certification of the election results and shall be treated in all respects in the same manner as ordinances of the same kind adopted by Council. If conflicting ordinances are approved at the same election, the one receiving the greatest number o f affirmative votes shall prevail to the extent of such conflict.

    2. Referendum . If a majority of the qualified electors voting on a referred ordinance vote against it,
      it shall be considered repealed.

ARTICLE XI

GENERAL PROVISIONS

Section 1101 . Amendment Procedures

This Charter shall be amended in conformity with the provisions of Act 62 of 1972, as amended.

Section 1102 . Election Procedures

The procedures for the nomination and election of the officers of the City of Scranton shall be in conformity
with the general laws of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania for municipal elections.

Section 1103 . Code of Ethics

The administrative Code of the City shall contain a Code of Ethics.

Section 1104 . General Laws

All reference to the general laws contained in this charter refer to the general laws of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and are intended to include any amendments or revisions to such chapter and section or to the corresponding chapters and sections of any rearrangement of the general laws enacted subsequent to the adoption of the charter.

Section 1105 . Gifts of Donations

Every department, board, or commission may with council approval accept on behalf of the city, gifts or donations of money, securities or other personal property, or the income of which shall be useful to the work of any department, board, or commission.

ARTICLE XII

CONTRACTS

Section 1201 . Contracts

All contracts whether for purchasing goods, properties, services, or supplies or the leasing or renting of same, necessary for the administration of the city shall be done in accordance with the requirements of and procedures established in the Administrative Code.

ARTICLE XIII

TRANSITIONAL PROVISIONS

Section 1301 . Administrative Code

The attached Administrative Code which contains a Code of Ethics will become effective with the Charter and will remain in full
force and effect as the Administrative Code of the City of Scranton unless and until amended by proper ordinance of the City Council, which may be finally adopted only after a public Hearing held following public notice stating clearly the proposed amendment to the Administrative Code.

Section 1302 . Elected Officials

Elected officials in office at the time of adoption of this charter shall remain in office for the full term to which they were elected.
Their powers, duties, and responsibilities shall be modified at the effective date of this charter to reflect the provisions herein.

Section 1303 . Continuation.

All ordinances, resolutions, rules, regulations, and procedures of the City of Scranton Government shall remain in full force and effect unless and until amended by a proper ordinance of City Council or action of the Mayor in accordance with authority granted
by this charter.

Section 1304 . Salaries

Compensation to be paid to elected officials holding the positions of Mayor, Councilperson, and Controller shall be established by the City Council no later than February 1 of the year in which an eletion will be held to fill any or all of these positions for a full four year term. Compensation of any elected officials occupying these positions shall not be increased or changed in any way during their elected term of office.

The base annual salaries for elected officials effective with this charter shall be: Mayor - $20,00. Controller - $15,000; Councilperson - $7,000. This provision shall apply to incumbent office holders.

ARTICLE XIV

SEVERABILITY

Section 1401 . Constitutional Construction

The provisions of this Charter shall be severable; and if any of its provisions shall be held to be unconstitutional or illegal,
the validity of any of the remaining provisions of the Carter shall not be affected thereby.

ARTICLE XV

EFFECTIVE DATE

Section 1501 . Effective Date

The effective date of this Charter shall be the first Monday of January, 1976