TO: MAYOR WYTHE AND CITY COUNCIL
FROM: PARKS AND RECREATION ADVISORY COMMISSION
THROUGH: RENEE KRAUSE, CMC, DEPUTY CITY CLERK I
DATE: FEBRUARY 26, 2014
SUBJECT: REDUCING MEETINGS OF THE BOARD, COMMISSIONS, AND COMMITTEES
The Parks and Recreation Advisory Commission discussed the Council request to reduce the number of meetings at the regular meeting on February 20, 2014. The commission agreed by consensus to reduce the number of meetings by an additional three meetings per year adding January, June and July. The commission does not have a scheduled meeting in December. The commission would still like to be able to schedule special meetings as required without permission of council.
Following is the excerpt of that discussion and subsequent motion.
B. Memorandum from City Clerk re: Reducing Meetings of the Commission
Chair Steffy read the title into the record. He questioned if they had to reduce the meeting schedule or just a suggestion from Council. Ms. Krause explained that if the commission feels strongly that a reduction in meetings would prohibit the commission accomplishing the tasks set before them they can certainly make that recommendation.
Ms. Engebretsen explained that for this year since they have the needs assessment and it has been established by the City Manager that there will be a need for a few special meetings that they can recommend that the commission will make the changes to the 2015 meeting schedule this fall. Chair Steffy read the recommendations in the memo and requested comments from the commission. He believed there may be some compromise between these recommendations.
LOWNEY/STEFFY - MOVED TO RECOMMEND MEETING EVERY MONTH EXCEPT JANUARY, JUNE, JULY, AND DECEMBER.
There was a brief discussion on the following: benefits to establishing committees, putting the onus on the commission to get their work done before summer, and if there is nothing to address at the next meeting that they cancel the meeting ahead of time, the reasons why they are not allowed to create committees and why they must reduce the meetings.
ARCHIBALD/LOWNEY - MOVED TO AMEND THE MOTION TO ALLOW THE COMMISSION TO HOLD SPECIAL MEETINGS AS NEEDED WITHOUT PERMISSION OF COUNCIL.
Commissioner Lowney voiced concern that City Council is already perceived as not listening to the voice of the public and every step that they take to diminish their voices only adds to that perception. She noted that they already lost the ability to form and have committees she is not sure how she will vote now to reduce their abilities even more. Additional comment from staff being able to address their work requirements then also having to fulfill the thousand and one things that a committee or commission wants to have done too is some of the basis for not having committees and reducing the meetings. Commissioner Lillibridge also voiced concern on the ability to provide public input and reiterated that they are advisory to the Council and if they do reduce their meetings how can the commission advise Council in a timely manner. This effectively removes that ability and public input to council in her opinion.
VOTE.(Amendment). YES. NON-OBJECTION. UNANIMOUS CONSENT.
LOWNEY/STEFFY – MOVED TO AMEND THE MOTION TO READ MEETING EVERY MONTH WITH THE EXCEPTION OF JANUARY, JULY AND DECEMBER.
There was a brief discussion that to miss the June meeting with the Needs Assessment would not be the best thing to do this year. They can review it when the 2015 meeting schedule is being reviewed.
VOTE. (Second amendment) YES. NON-OBJECTION. UNANIMOUS CONSENT.
VOTE. (Main). YES. NON-OBJECTION. UNANIMOUS CONSENT.
RECOMMENDATION: Approve the request to reduce the meeting schedule to eight meetings per year and retain the privilege to schedule special meetings as required.