The City Council is considering moving the Council’s regular evening meetings into the dinner hour. The Cuncil has twice talked about moving the 7pm meeting start time to 6:30 and the matter is again on the Council agenda for next Monday night’s meeting.
At last Monday night’s Council meeting, former City Council member Cynthia Richardson warned that unless the Council meets at a convenient time for residents, then the Council won’t achieve a goal mentioned during the last election campaigns of making the Council more available.
Council member Liz Lovelett pointed out moving meetings earlier could squeeze her dinner time with her family.
Council member Ryan Walters said that, “not a whole lot of people are showing up, anyway.” Last Monday’s meeting was attended by fewer than a dozen people.
The Council moved from a 7:30 pm start to 7:00 pm three years ago, said Mayor Gere.
Much of last Monday’s discussion centered around a convenient meeting time for Council members, not the public attending meetings.
Council member Brad Adams said, “flagging energy,” is a problem he has when meetings go as late ad 9 pm. He thought a 6:30 pm start time, “seems like a fair trial.”
Council member Eric Johnson said moving to an earlier time would impact various council committee meetings, some of which are at 5:45 p.m. He said earlier in the evening would be harder for council members with jobs and may be difficult for staff as well.
Other Council members, including John Archibald and Erica Pickett, said they don’t care one way or the other.