Monday, December 7, 2015

How Long Does Council Want People to Wait to Speak?

With City Council poised to make yet another needless bonehead error sure to add to their already diminished perception with Citizens over ending the Boyd Forum at the beginning of meetings, I wanted to be exact in how long Council wants Citizens to have to wait through Council doing nothing before having a chance to speak.

Over the last year according to the length of Council videos, Citizens would have to wait the following times before addressing their concerns to the Council.

Nov 12 - 4 hours 48 minutes
Oct 8 - 4 hours 36 minutes
Sept 17 - 4 hours 57 minutes
Aug 20 - 6 hours 17 minutes
Jul 16 - 53 minutes plus 54 minutes
June 18 - 3 hours 4 minutes
May 14 - 4 hours 19 minutes
Apr 9 - 2 hours 4 minutes
Mar 12 - 4 hours 2 minutes
Feb 12 - 2 hours 52 minutes
Jan 15 - 3 hours 46 minutes

Waiting til after 9 pm to be addressed by YOUR BOSSES.

Council, is it to much to ask since you only meet once a month, that the Citizens you work for get to speak first?

Anyone who votes for this measure should be recalled and fired.



10 comments:

Anonymous said...

Notice what's happening:
Open forum is changed from 5 minutes to 3 minutes speaking time.
Open forum is eliminated from Monday's Agenda Conference, public meetings.
Open forum is then limited to 30 minutes maximum during Council meetings, no matter how many people have signed up for 3 minutes, only 10 of them will be heard.
Now, they want to move Open forum to the end of their once a month 5-7 hour, new average time, meeting.
Once that is done, and no one shows up at 10:30 p.m. to speak, they will entirely eliminate Boyd/Open Forum and the reason will be given that no one shows up to speak so it's no longer necessary.
City Staffers may not know how to read a Zoning Map, or draft a Food Truck Ordinance, but they sure know how to trample all over the First Amendment rights of their citizens.

Anonymous said...

Just out of curiosity! How is the City Staff responsible for the Boyd/Open Forum? That is your elected Officials not City Staff. Not they don't have enough to be blamed for but this his nothing to do with them this is all Council.

George Hawthorne said...

I think they are headed for a lawsuit. The Boyd Forum is named after the court case ruling won by Mr. Boyd that set State precedence for public input into governance decisions. The fundamental basis of the ruling stated that the "public" must be heard "prior" to the governing body rendering a decision on issues of law and governance of the "public's business." Accordingly, placing the Boyd Forum "after" the "public's business" has been handled is a clear violation of the law and precedence set by the late Mr. Leroy Boyd. God rest his Soul and thank you for pubic officials accountable to hear from the "public."

Anonymous said...

Every last one of the Current City Council members should be ashamed of themselves. Its clear that they could care less what us citizens think.


I hope voters remember this during the next election
Every last one of them needs to go!!!

Anonymous said...

Is Al Coby not city Staff? He took credit for his actions in the PNJ interview.

ADVOCARE said...

George you are correct. AL Colby was responsible for delivering the message of changing Boyd forum. Sherri Myers made a motion to make it Leroy Boyd Forum

Anonymous said...

I am confused on this situation. I don't know politics well enough to understand the rules of everything but going to ask because I have gone to a few council meetings and trying to understand this issue better.

George said:
The fundamental basis of the ruling stated that the "public" must be heard "prior" to the governing body rendering a decision on issues of law and governance of the "public's business."

Every council meeting I have been to council has allowed/ask if anyone from the public wants to talk about the issue before vote is cast. As a result I would think that is meeting the purpose of the above statement/Boyd forum.

The way Boyd forum is used now does not seem right to me. It is at the start and appears to be used to express issues/business that is not on the agenda. Am I the only one that is seeing it that way? There is a handful of people that just ramble on at the podium about things that are national not local and things that are in the county not in the city, all at the beginning of the council meeting. I kind of understand if it gets moved to the end but should someone wait that long? I don't know but if it is important enough they would stay. I would if it was that important to me to be heard about something that is not on the agenda. Now is that right when the meeting last 4 hours that is a slippery slope and glad I don't have to make that decision.

George Hawthorne said...

Anonymous,

The Boyd Forum provides the public to speak on issues that may not be directly related to a specific agenda item however, is directly related to the "governance" positions they may undertake or need to undertake. Specifically, it provides the public the platform to directly inquire of politicians "on the record."

The City Council has a "history" and practice of "burying" matters of great public interest towards the end of agenda items in order to "wear down the public opposition" and there is no denying this.

The Boyd Forum at the "beginning" provides the public input into the "process" before the "political games" begin.

However, I agree that there are a "usual cast of characters" that speak to non-relevant issues to Pensacola City "business" and this reality should be handled by the President of the Council and clearly define what the "scope" of comments by speakers. Furthermore, they must call out of order non-compliant speakers.

ADVOCARE said...

Taxpayers and voters are allowed to ramble.if they don't want to listen to the citizens don't run for office

Anonymous said...

Remind us why we need a council?? They have systematically eliminated meetings, stifled public comment and are agreeable to follow procedures which are not proper.
Was everyone invited to the Christmas party because nobody thought that was a bad idea to change the meeting and Mr Spencer blasted Ms Myers for commenting that she felt it improper and it WAS.

Mr Spencer knows that there is no procedure that allows one council member to reschedule the meeting so he can attend a Christmas party.

Mr Spencer owes Ms Myers an apology. She was not loud, disrespectful, overly anything except she dared to notice and mention that again the council violated its own policies and procedures