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Appropriate time for discussion


Guest Gladys

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Here's my question. Sometimes there's back-and-forth discussions during speaker presentation. What I'm unclear about is whether Public Comment on an agendized item can be responded to or if it is subject to the same rules as general Public Comment where speakers comment, but no board member replies or comments. If someone knows the answer, can they point me to where in the book this is? Would greatly appreciate-thank you!

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I don't think RONR presents any rules for how a (board, or council) member may (or may not) respond to a Public Comment speaker.  The book essentially says that the board (or council) gets to write the rules   --  p. 96-97  --  about dealing with Public Comment periods (unless some law has done it for them).  I suppose such rules could include a description of how to respond to a speaker's comments directly.

 

Seems to me that a member/speaker back and forth could get messy fast, particularly if there are ill feelings.  Listening in stony silence seems best.

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Here's my question. Sometimes there's back-and-forth discussions during speaker presentation. What I'm unclear about is whether Public Comment on an agendized item can be responded to or if it is subject to the same rules as general Public Comment where speakers comment, but no board member replies or comments. If someone knows the answer, can they point me to where in the book this is? Would greatly appreciate-thank you!

 

What I'm unclear about is what rules you are referring to, that say no member may reply or comment.  They must be rules of yours, or, they may not exist at all.  Have you ever seen the rule in writing anywhere?.

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Thank you JD.

 

Robert, thank you for asking that clarifying question. My situation is a school board council meeting. When I say "speaker" I am referring to a guest speaker such as a member of the public. I am wondering if this is anywhere in the rule book or if it is allowed.

 

Gary, I have not seen the rules in writing. I believe our council goes by the general RONR. Some of the council members are wondering about this and comparing it to another city's handling of the situation. 

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Gary, I have not seen the rules in writing. I believe our council goes by the general RONR. Some of the council members are wondering about this and comparing it to another city's handling of the situation. 

 

That's what i suspected.  There is no rule in RONR that members may not respond or comment upon the statements of non-members during a public hearing.

 

Nevertheless I was told (a long time ago) by someone who claimed to know, that there was such a rule.   While I agreed that it might be a good idea for members to think twice (or some greater number of times) before responding, i was suspicious of the allegation that it was a rule and, of course, it turned out not to be one--at least not one contained in RONR.

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