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City Council Tables Public Comment Resolution


City Council Summary: Public Hearings/Ordinances/Resolutions

By Misha Corbett of Apopka Then and Now


Ordinance 2466 – Second Reading – Large Scale Future Land Use Amendment - Legislative David Moon

Ordinance 2496 – Second Reading – Small Scale – Future Land Use Amendment – Legislative David Moon

Ordinance 2497 – Second Reading – Change of Zoning - Quasi-Judicial David Moon

Resolution 2016-16 - Adopting Public Participation Policy & Procedures for Addressing the City Council. Mayor Kilsheimer

Resolution 2016-17 - Establish new bank depository and authorized signers. Glenn A. Irby

In reference to Resolution 2016-16…

Commissioner Kyle Becker: Confirmed that at present, the City Council shall determine their own rules with regard to public participation. There is no written process. With regard to Section 6D, he’d like to omit the word applause, which he associates as a positive thing. Confirmed that the guidelines are basically moving the public comment to the front of the meeting. He doesn’t see why it should be time bound & feels it should be left at 4 minutes. Confirmed that anything that is quasi-judicial must allow room for public comment. He feels we do not need to time box if there are people that want to speak. He feels that putting a 30 minute time limit is not necessary.

Commissioner Doug Bankson: Confirmed that public comment will not be just up front, but they will also be given space within the meeting as well (on agenda items). He feels that being effective & efficient is the goal. He would like to know if the public feels limited by the 3 minute time limit vs 4 minutes. He has no issue with the 3 minute limit, but would like to know what the public feels. He also felt that the 30-minute limit could be seen as repressive.

Mayor Joe Kilsheimer: Stated that he hardly every cuts anyone off & hates when he has to do so. He feels it is in our best interest to run an efficient meeting. He stated repeatedly that 3 minutes is the norm at nearly every other meeting in the surrounding area. He feels the 3 minute limit allows time for more people to speak. He wonders is there are several people who would like to speak on the same item, they can determine who is for, who is against, and designate a spokesperson.

Commissioner Billie Dean: Wondered if this would allow for people to borrow time.

Public Comment:

Aida Campbell (citizen): She prepared a speech, but decided to speak from the heart. She feels that 3 minutes may work very well for a professional. But, for a person who may not have completed high school or who may have a handicap, 3 minutes is not enough time…4 minutes is needed.

Eddie Poirer (citizen): He feels he is a pretty good speaker, but he uses up all of the time he is given. The real issue is the people who go on for 5, 6, or 7 minutes. The council is elected to listen to the people. We want to be heard.

David Hoffman (citizen): He feels the time limit proposal is an attempt to limit public comment.

Misha Corbett (citizen): Doesn’t have an issue with the 3 minute limit. But, doesn’t see a reason to limit all public comment to 30 minutes. If there happened to be 12, 13 or more people that wanted to speak, how can we say to one that they can, but to another that they cannot.

Back to the Council:

Becker: For the most part people come to speak about something on the agenda. I don't think we should time-box that. It 's the perception that we are taking something away and perception is reality. I don't see a compelling reason to change.

Bankson: The people have spoken. Made a motion to leave it at 4 minutes & strike the word applause & the time box.

Kilsheimer: Not comfortable editing on the fly. Will edit the document to reflect those changes & bring it back to the next meeting.

Note: Reggie Connell of The Apopka Voice contributed to this report.



city council, Public Comments


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