In late March 1969 Mayor Thomas J. D'Alesandro, III appointed a commission to consider revision of an amendments to the 1964 charter. Several amendments had been added in 1967 and 1968 and the ten member commission, chaired by Reuben Oppenheimer (secretary was Leonard E. Cohen), also considered the relationship of the mayor and policy-making personnel in the executive department, municipal labor relations, and modernization of civil service. The commission also was charged to consider amendments pending in the city council, specifically an amendment to change the municipal elections to an even year starting in 1972 and every four years thereafter. The commission decided to issue separate reports on proposed amendments and submit them separately to the voters.
The commission met beginning April 1, 1969, considering municipal elections (res. 738). Hearings were held on May 2 and on July 28, 1969. The first report was issued recommending the city council not adopt this resolution.
The commission next considered the civil service and personnel with hearings in June, July, and September 1969 with major city officials and civic and labor organizations. On March 30, 1970 a tentative report was issued proposing a major reorganization of civil service and the creation of a Department of Personnel. The Director of Personnel would be a mayoral appointee and civil service would be restricted to protective duties. Provisions were also proposed to recognize negotiating with public employees. A second report, concerning civil service personnel, was issued April 29, 1970 further suggesting that civil service retain more power as a separate and autonomous unit with investigatory powers, the right to administer and grade certain civil service examinations, and the right to handle municipal employee appeals and grievances. This recommendation was approved by the city council (res. 1416, 1970) although it was referred to the judiciary committee preventing its inclusion on the November 1970 ballot.
The commission also considered labor relations and collective bargaining, especially to achieve a balanced interaction between the executive and legislative branches in such negotiations. In March 1971 city council resolution 1695 (amending the charter to provide for a Department of Labor Relations with a commissioner to be appointed by the mayor and approved by the city council without regard to a civil service commission) was referred to the commission. On April 2, 1971 the commission issued its third report and recommended that this resolution not be approved, suggesting labor relations remain under a Department of Personnel as proposed in resolution 1416 still tabled in the council. After April 1971 there was little activity by the commission.
These records reflect the operations and filing system of the commission.