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Committee Meetings and Agenda


Guest Richard

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I serve on a 7 member Town Council along with a Mayor with tie breaking powers. The Council meets monthly for its regular monthly meeting.

We have 10 standing committees of the Council in which each is comprised of 3 members of the Council. The Mayor, during our organizational meeting, appoints the members to the committee(s) of his choosing.

Our committees are Finance, Health & Ordinance, Streets & Lights, Buildings & Properties, Employment & Personnel, etc.

Question:

Is there anything within RONR that defines how committee meetings are to be called and how items of business are to be added, or approved to be added to the agenda of the committee meetings?

Should'nt the Mayor have control of the committees, and what they are working on?

Any help is appreciated!

Richard in VA

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No the Mayor does not have control. He/she may appoint the members according to the rules of the city. That's his/her direct power only. The Committees, unless the By-laws state otherwise, will report to the Council.

Agendas will be set by the Committees, normally assisted by city staff. Issues under their jurisdiction may be discussed, recommended, etc. Issues referred to a Committee by the Council will be added to the Agenda for their meetings.

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Question:

Is there anything within RONR that defines how committee meetings are to be called and how items of business are to be added, or approved to be added to the agenda of the committee meetings?

Should'nt the Mayor have control of the committees, and what they are working on?

Any help is appreciated!

Richard in VA

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Also, Read RONR/11 p. 500 - 503 regarding the calling of Committee Meetings. Generally, the meetings are called by the Chairman, or the first named person if during the appointment process a chair was not named. If the chairman somehow doesn't get arround to calling a meeting, any two members may do so. Sending out a meeting notice is the responsibility of the committee member(s) who call the meeting. A draft of a meeting agenda could be sent out with the call to the meeting, but it would be up to the body to adopt it, or not.

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The calling of a meeting is not usually a problem in our case. Usually the Town Manager will contact the Committee Chair with a list of agenda items. Manager and Chair work out a meeting time the the other 2 members before a call is put out. The call includes the agenda.

But Rev Ed mentions above that issues referred to a committee by the Council get added to the agenda. Does this mean all issues should come before the full council and then for the Council to refer to committee any issue it considers appropriate?

Thank you!

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But Rev Ed mentions above that issues referred to a committee by the Council get added to the agenda. Does this mean all issues should come before the full council and then for the Council to refer to committee any issue it considers appropriate?

Thank you!

Exclusively, not necessarily. If you look through the different forms of committee reports p. 511 - 529, one of these forms are "A Report at the Initiative of a Standing Committee Recommending Action." However, check your city charter (bylaws) or other council rules or policies regarding what other limitations they may place on a particular committee.

However, the council could in theory take measures and place certain limitations on any of its committees, as long as no other higher authority or set of rules prohibit it from doing so.

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But Rev Ed mentions above that issues referred to a committee by the Council get added to the agenda. Does this mean all issues should come before the full council and then for the Council to refer to committee any issue it considers appropriate?

No. Some Committees may have issues come before them before they come before the Council. Others might never come before the Council of the Committee is empowered to make decisions (such as a Committee of Adjustments which might be empowered to all small variances to properties.) However, the Council is free to refer (or not to refer) issues to Committees. Committees can make suggestions if it chooses to as well.

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