Pensacola City charter referendum, 1916

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On October 10, 1916, a referendum election was held to consider various changes to the Pensacola City charter, principally to return the City of Pensacola to a mayor-council government. The previous charter, adopted in 1913, had moved Pensacola to a city commission government.

The electorate failed to approve the 1916 charter, voting 1225-575 to reject the proposed changes and retain the commission form of government.

Charter Board[edit]

The Charter Board which developed the 1916 charter was created by the Florida Legislature in 1915.[1] The members of the board were as follows: Philip Keyes Yonge, chair; I. H. Aiken, Max Lee Bear, Louis de M. Blocker, R. M. Cary, J. H. Christie, William Fisher, S. F. Fulghum, Charles Hartman, C. J. Levey, John A. Merritt, William L. Moyer, G. H. Muller, C. M. Sweeney, and John G. Welsh.


The Charter Board convened on June 12, 1916. On August 24, the Charter Board voted by an 11-1 margin to approve a revised charter and submit it to a referendum election. The full title of the document was:


to abolish the offices of City Commissioners, and the existing Commission Form of Government; to provide the number, powers, duties, compensation, terms of office and the time and manner of the election and appointment of the officers and boards, in whom the corporate powers of the City shall be vested, and who shall possess and exercise the jurisdiction, powers, rights, privileges, and duties vested and imposed by existing laws and ordinances in and upon the City Commissioners, the Board of Commissioners and the other offices and boards of said City.

  1. Chapter 6940, Laws of Florida 1915.