City Charter clearly sets out the role of the Mayor and the City Council. The City Council is governing body and is not responsible for the day to day operation of the city. They are treading on territory that is not within the realm of their responsibility according to city charter.
Article II, City Council, Section 2.01. General powers and duties
All powers of the city shall be vested in the city council, except as otherwise provided by law or this charter, and the council shall provide for the exercise thereof and for the performance of all duties and obligations imposed on the city by law. The council shall act as a part-time, policy making and legislative body, avoiding management and administrative issues.
Article III, Mayor, Section 3.01. Executive power.
The executive and administrative power of the city shall be vested in a mayor.
City Charter, Article V, Financial Procedures clearly spell out appropriation and revenue requirements for conducting business. The City Council approves the budget. Each October, the council approves an appropriation ordinance that sets appropriations by fund and by department for the ensuing fiscal year. City Charter spells out procedures for amendments to the appropriation ordinance after adoption for such things as supplemental appropriations or transfer of appropriations.
Clearly, contracts are an an administrative function. If the City Council wants to know more about a project or a budget appropriation they approved by ordinance, then they should ask the administration for a report at an Information Meeting. To pass an ordinance that requires the administration to bring every contract over $25,000 to the City Council for adoption is pure minutiae and inefficient government.
The City Council has more important things to worry about than this administrative issue. The finance department puts out mountains of financial information. It is all there, you just have to read it and review it. Ask questions of the administration regarding contracts if you want to know something specific. To just throw all this information on an agenda for approval is not good government. This is not big picture thinking and should not be adopted by the full City Council.