The rules regarding board attendance may get stricter soon. At their June 14 meeting, commissioners debated the possibility of allowing for the removal of a board member if he or she misses three consecutive meetings.
Commissioner Julie Carson said the boards need standardized rules and that some boards only meet quarterly, making consecutive absences all the more detrimental to the board performing its established function.
But not all commissioners are ready to enact new rules just yet and voting on the issue was delayed until a later meeting. “Maybe someone is going to be in the hospital for the next three meetings,” said Commissioner Tom Green. “I don’t want to discourage people from serving.”
Vice Mayor Scott Newton said the three consecutive meetings rule doesn’t address the possibility that someone could miss more than three meetings, non-consecutively, and not get removed.
Commissioners also debated yearly mandatory Sunshine Law training for board members.
But that, too, was tabled for a later meeting. Since boards make decisions that impact the city, the meetings and members are subject to the same rules that govern elected officials and city employees.
“Two hours [of Sunshine training] every year is overkill. The first year is enough,” Green said. Newton said board members should know the rules after the first year. “If you don’t, there’s something wrong.”