CIRCLEVILLE — The Pickaway County Board of Elections certified Thursday of 16 people running for charter commission.

Of the 16 people, the top 15 vote getters will serve on the commission. These 15 people plus the question of “Do you wish a charter to be drafted?” will appear on the Aug. 3 Special Election ballot.

The 16 candidates are: Bob Bensonhaver, Emory C. Brady, Jeff Carithers, Casey R. Chancey, Karen A. Hallinin, Colin H. Hedges, Andrea J.P. Humphries, Amy Isaac, Benjamin Isaac, Thomas J. Kopec, Michael Logan, Helen Maddox, Jeannett Rhoads, Richard Rhoades, Christine D. Spring and Tom E. Spring

A “Yes” vote will grant the committee the power to draft a charter. A “No” vote will not allow the process to move forward.

A charter is a legal document that can be compared to a constitution. It specifies a form of government for the city and is drafted by local citizens with the idea to strengthen the democratic process and create a more efficient government with more local control.

Sheri Theis, chair of the judicial committee, introduced the measure to full council. After the meeting, she explained the charter further.

Currently, Circleville operates as a statutory city, meaning the local city government is dictated by Ohio statutes.

“We follow the rules listed in the Ohio Revised Code and any changes to those rules must be made by the state legislature,” Theis said. “Cities that want to make a few of their own rules create and adopt a charter.”

If approved on Election Day in August, the committee would then have one calendar year to draft the charter and place it on the ballot.

Circleville previously approached the citizens about a charter and one was drafted and put on the ballot in May 2015. However, the final document was not approved nearly 2-to-1 with 400 votes for the charter and 726 votes against the charter.

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