3.16.040 Rules for public testimony.
A. Rules Applicable to Citizens’ Comments. Citizens’ comments shall be heard in the manner provided in this subsection and subsection (C) of this section. Each person’s comments shall be limited to three minutes unless a different time is designated by the Presiding Officer. Any changes in time must be applied equally to all citizens commenting on an item. A person who has previously spoken at a meeting during citizens’ comments may not speak again unless all other persons desiring to speak have been heard and time scheduled for citizens’ comments remains available. A person speaking a second time may only do so for one minute, unless the Presiding Officer designates a different time.
B. Rules Applicable to Public Hearing.
1. The Presiding Officer shall permit all persons desiring to speak on an item scheduled for public hearing to speak for not more than three minutes when the item is called. The person who has signed an application to rezone real property, or their representative, may speak during public hearing on the rezone request for not more than 10 minutes.
2. The Presiding Officer may alter the times specified in this subsection, so long as the alteration does not unreasonably deny any person an opportunity to speak at the public hearing.
3. The Clerk shall make available sign-up sheets on which persons desiring to speak on items scheduled for public hearing may indicate their desire. The Presiding Officer shall request comments from persons in the order in which they have signed up on said sheets, and then shall take comments from all other persons desiring to make them.
4. No person who has previously spoken during the public hearing on a particular item may speak again unless all other persons desiring to give testimony at the public hearing have spoken. A person speaking for a second time shall give testimony for not more than one minute, unless the Presiding Officer designates a different time.
5. No person may speak on an item after public hearing on that item has terminated, unless the Presiding Officer determines otherwise.
C. Rules Applicable to Both Citizens’ Comments and Public Hearings.
1. No person shall speak during an Assembly meeting until that person is recognized by the Presiding Officer. Upon recognition that person shall position themselves as directed by the Presiding Officer and shall state their full name, spelling the last name, and their neighborhood or place of residence.
2. All persons shall immediately cease speaking when notified by the Presiding Officer that the allotted time has expired.
3. Citizens giving testimony may ask questions of the Assemblymembers or the Mayor during their testimony on a public hearing item. The Presiding Officer may request an answer to a factual question from a citizen, asked during the three minutes of testimony, should the question and answer be useful to the item at issue, or desirable for public understanding of the issue, in the view of the Presiding Officer. Assemblymembers or the Mayor may ask questions of citizens giving testimony. Assemblymembers shall refrain from using question formats to engage in discussion or statements to the person testifying. The time allotted to a citizen for public testimony shall be extended automatically to provide additional time which is reasonably sufficient to answer all questions posed by the Assemblymembers and the Mayor.
4. All writings, photographs, plats, maps or other items presented by a citizen during public testimony for consideration by the Assembly shall be retained by the Clerk and affixed to the record of the proceedings.
5. Citizens may present written testimony by filing said testimony with the Clerk at or before the time scheduled for public hearing on the item or the time scheduled for citizens, comments if the item is not scheduled for public hearing.
D. A citizen, acting alone or with a group, shall not disrupt an Assembly meeting.
E. Rules Applicable to Public Participation by Teleconference. A person may provide citizen comments and/or testify on public hearing items by teleconference (e.g., telephone, videoconferencing, or similar technology); provided, that reasonable technical capabilities are available at the meeting location to allow participation by teleconference. To participate by teleconference, the person shall sign up to testify in the manner prescribed by the Clerk by 4:30 p.m. on the day of the meeting. If the person is not available at time of citizens comments or testimony for the item, the chair will take comments from the next person on the sign-up sheet. A person participating by teleconference must be able to hear and engage in discussion and be audible to all persons participating in the meeting. (Ord. 2023-02 § 2, 2023; Ord. 2021-09 § 2, 2021; Ord. 2019-09 § 2, 2019; Ord. 2018-10 § 2, 2018; Ord. 2000-01 § 4, 2000; amended during 1993 republication; Ord. 86-035 § 2, 1986. 2004 Code § 2.09.080.)