2/21/06 MW Memo to Mayor & BOA re Policy for Public Remarks




To:  Mayor & BOA


From:  MW - City Clerk


Re:  Policy for Public Remarks


Please find below an article from the Post Dispatch for the City of Kirkwood regarding public participation.  Maybe our City should follow these guidelines for public comment.


Kirkwood City Council sets policy for public remarks


By Janet McNichols

Special to the Post Dispatch


Kirkwood - The City Council recently issued guidelines for public participation in its mtgs.  All speakers will get 3 mins to address the council.  They must provide their names & addresses for the record.  Council members do not respond to or engage in dialogue with the speaker.  The mayor may direct speakers to the city clerk or an aprop city dept for help with their issue.  Display materials must face the council, not the audience.  The time speakers take for setup & removal of materials is included in the 3 min limit.   


Speakers must show respect for the council & staff.  Use of foul or abusive language will result in ofc'ls ordering speakers to leave the mic.  If speakers do not comply, ofc'ls may order them to leave the bldg.  A police ofcr is present at all City Council mtgs. 


Basically the same rules apply at PBH's.  The procedure for PBH's includes identification of the item that is being addressed.  The city atty is asked to enter exhibits into the record.  The council then invites the applicant to make a presentation re the issue.  Then the mayor invites members of the audience to speak in favor or against the issue.  Members of the City Council may ask follow-up ques's of the petitioner.  The city asks people at mtgs to respect others.