Open Meetings Act Resolution/Policy

Policy

View the 2023/2024 resolution/policy (searchable PDF).  

Speaking at Governing Body Meetings

Pursuant to the Governing Body's adopted Rules of Procedure (see below), public speakers are allowed at Governing Body meetings as follows:

Public Forum

1. Any person wishing to address the Governing Body related to a non-agenda item shall register in person with the City Clerk no later than fifteen (15) minutes prior to the scheduled start time of a meeting.

2. Manner of address: 

     a. Each person shall seek the recognition of the presiding officer.

     b. Only the person signed up to speak shall stand at the podium, unless assistance or accommodations are needed to provide the public input.

     c. Each person shall give their name and address.

     d. Comments shall be addressed to the Governing Body as a whole through the presiding officer and not to any members thereof.

     e. No person shall enter into any discussion without the permission of the presiding officer.

     f. Speakers will be recognized by the presiding officer in order of registration with the City Clerk.

     g. Each person speaking under public forum shall have either one (1) or two (2) minutes in total for comments after being recognized by the presiding officer. The presiding officer shall determine the specific amount of time given to public forum speakers at a meeting.

     h. No more than two (2) hours in total will be allotted for public forum comments at any meeting.  A majority vote of the Governing Body members present may approve to extend the total amount of time allotted for public forum at a meeting.

Public Input on Agenda Items

1. Public input on items listed under Public Hearings shall be taken pursuant to the Public Hearing procedures stated in these rules.

2. Any person wishing to address the Governing Body related to an item listed under Second Reading of Ordinances, First Reading of Ordinances, or Discussion and Deliberation, shall register in person with the City Clerk no later than fifteen (15) minutes prior to the scheduled start time of a meeting. Manner of address:

     a. Each person shall seek the recognition of the presiding officer.

     b. Only the person signed up to speak shall stand at the podium, unless assistance or accommodations are needed to provide the public input.

     c. Each person shall give their name and either City Council District or address.

     d. Comments shall be addressed to the Governing Body as a whole through the presiding officer and not to any members thereof.

     e. No person shall enter into any discussion without the permission of the presiding officer.

     f. Speakers will be recognized by the presiding officer in order of registration with the City Clerk.

     g. Each person speaking on a specific agenda item shall have either one (1) or two (2) minutes in total for comments after being recognized by the       presiding officer. The presiding officer shall determine the specific amount of time given to speakers at a meeting.     

     h. No more than two (2) hours in total will be allotted for comments pertaining to a specific agenda item at any meeting. A majority vote of the Governing Body members present may approve to extend the total amount of time allotted for public input related to a specific agenda item at a meeting.

     i. Public input can be submitted in writing to the City Clerk, as clerk of the Governing Body, prior to the date of the meeting in which the item is scheduled to be heard; however, only public input received before 4 p.m. on the day of the meeting will be entered into the record prior to the meeting.

Public Hearing Procedures

A. Reasonable efforts shall be made to give notice of public hearings to all interested people. Notice of public hearings shall state the subject, the time and place of the public hearing, the manner in which interested people may express their views, and where interested people may obtain copies of the material that is the subject of the hearing.

B. A meeting of the Governing Body is called to order and business, if any, is considered until the public hearing comes on the agenda.

C. All aggrieved persons, and materially relevant witnesses sponsored by such interested persons, wishing to participate in the public hearing and address the Governing Body shall register in person or via specified communications technology/equipment with the City Clerk no later than fifteen (15) minutes prior the scheduled start time of a related hearing. For the purposes of a Public Hearing, an Aggrieved Person is a person who has a direct personal or pecuniary interest, or a property right, which is affected by the decision being considered by the Governing Body. The Aggrieved Person’s interest must be an immediate and substantial consequence of the decision, and not merely nominal or remote. Any person who receives specific notice of an official action which is required pursuant to ordinances shall be considered an Aggrieved Person. Those who register must provide name and address, and whether they wish to speak as a proponent or opponent, and how they qualify as an Aggrieved Person as defined above. Any person who fails to register shall not be permitted to speak.

D. All Aggrieved Persons offering testimony as parties to the proceeding and their materially relevant witnesses will be sworn by the City Clerk and may be questioned by the Governing Body. The Governing Body conducts de novo hearings, as such, an Aggrieved Person does not have to appear before the Planning and Zoning Board to participate as a party in a land use proceeding. However, appeals of final decisions of the Planning and Zoning Board may only be brought by an “Aggrieved Person” who appeared before the Planning and Zoning Board.

E. The order of speakers for a Public Hearing item is:

1. City staff presentation

2. Proponent/Applicants

3. Opponent/ Aggrieved Persons

4. Governing Body question of parties (also allowed throughout the proceeding)

The presiding officer may change the order of speakers so that testimony is heard in the most logical groupings.

F. The presiding officer will introduce the item, open the public hearing and call upon the City staff to submit its report into evidence, and request the proponent to describe the matter under consideration.

G. Aggrieved Persons shall have the opportunity to submit data, views, or arguments orally or in writing. All written material must be marked as exhibits, submitted to the City Clerk a minimum of ten (10) days prior to the hearing date, and placed into evidence as part of the administrative record.

H. The presiding officer may establish reasonable speaker time limits and otherwise control presentations to avoid repetition or the introduction of irrelevant evidence. Additional time may be granted if appropriate and necessary to secure a full and fair presentation of either factual or opinion testimony or of legal argument.

I. After the proponents and opponents have had an opportunity to be heard, the presiding officer will allow Governing Body members to ask questions of the parties and Aggrieved Persons.

J. After the Governing Body has heard all the evidence, the presiding officer closes the public hearing and entertains a motion. Following the motion and its second, discussion occurs among the body. Comments from the general public on legal or policy matters raised by the proceeding may be received after the close of the public hearing, but will not be considered as evidence or as part of the record by the Governing Body. The presiding officer calls the question and requests identification and adoption of proposed facts and conclusions of law that support the Governing Body’s decision to be issued in a written order.

K. The Governing Body shall promptly prepare a written decision that includes an order granting or denying relief and a statement of the factual and legal basis for the order; shall file the order with the City Clerk; and shall mail a copy of the written decision to all persons who appeared as Aggrieved Persons in the proceeding. Mailing will be done by certified mail to the address provided by the Aggrieved Person at the proceeding.

L. No member of the Governing Body shall initiate, permit or consider a communication directly or indirectly with a party or the party’s representative outside of the hearing and outside of the presence of all interested parties concerning the pending matter, pursuant to Municipal Code Section 39.23.


Additional information

View Governing Body Rules of Procedure






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