MADISON, Ala. (WHNT) — Once again, the idea of changing the governance style in the City of Madison has arisen.

City officials are proposing a shift from a mayor-council format to a council-manager government, altering the way decisions and appointments are made throughout the city. But the question is being raised — why change course in the middle of a steady stride?

“We don’t know if this is the right answer or not,” said Paul Finley, the city’s three-time mayor. “Some have used this system some haven’t, but I think success comes from sharing information, obtaining information, and then collectively making a good decision.”

Changing the course of governance would leave the mayor as the face of the town and the president of the city council. A city manager would then be put in charge to handle its daily operations.

During Monday’s city council meeting, Auburn Mayor Ron Anders weighed in on the conversation by sharing his city’s 40-year success with the council-manager strategy.

“The accountability still lies with elected officials,” Anders explained. “It is up to us to lead and guide and inspect out of the city manager those initiates and those things that are most important to our citizens. Everybody has to be on the same page as you do the work of the citizens.”

Over a dozen citizens stepped to the podium to raise questions about the new style concerning accountability, budgeting, and public access to city officials like school board members.

Finley says the new strategy could be a way to keep consistency in the office. Unlike traditional city officials who serve on term limits, city managers are able to remain in their position until they decide to step down.

“That city manager is going to be here for a while,” Finley said. “They’re a professional that deals with budgets and personnel each and every day. So that’s why we wanted to look at it versus a city administrator that changes in and out with a mayor.”

“This is a longer-term that we hope would make a difference in our city,” he continued.

A petition to move the consideration is being efforted by the community organization, “Madison Forward.”

If they manage to get 900 signatures, residents could call for a referendum on the government format.