General Rules and Procedures for Public Participation at Commission Meetings
Who May Speak
Any individual who wishes to address the County Commission on any subject within the scope of the Commission’s authority must fill out a speaker form located on the Dais and furnish it to the Deputy Clerk prior to the beginning of the meeting. Please include the speaker’s name, address, telephone number, the number(s) of the subject agenda item(s), and reason for discussion. See specific situations, below, for additional information and rules of procedure. The Mayor will call for speakers, at the appropriate time. Please wait to be called upon, before coming to the podium to speak.
Speaking on Items on the Agenda
- Consent Agenda Items - These are items that the Commission does not need to discuss individually; items are voted on as a group.
- Regular Agenda Items - These are items that the Commission will discuss individually in the order listed on the agenda, prior to voting on each item. Upon occasion, the Mayor may change the order in which items are addressed. It is the responsibility of the person wishing to speak to keep track of when the item will be heard. Once an item has been called, no further speaker sign-up will be permitted.
If the subject you wish to address is not on the agenda or part of an agenda item, you must submit a Delegation Request to address the Board of County Commissioners.
Speaking on Subjects Not on the Agenda
- Any individual shall be entitled to be placed on the official agenda of a regular meeting of the Commission and be heard concerning any matter within the scope of the Commission’s jurisdiction through a Delegation Request. To make a Delegation Request, submit a letter to the County Administrator at least two (2) weeks in advance of the meeting at which they wish to appear. Send it to the County Administrator, Governmental Center, 115 S. Andrews Avenue, Room 409, Ft. Lauderdale, FL 33301. Please include an address, phone number(s) and e-mail address where the speaker can be reached. Back-up materials, if any, must be included with the original Delegation Request. Late distribution of such material or distribution to other individuals or groups without furnishing advance copies to the Board of County Commissioners may result in deferral of the speaking opportunity to a future meeting, in order to allow the Board an opportunity to review the material before the discussion.
- Each delegation will be notified of the scheduled appearance date and time. Please indicate in your request the manner in which you wish to receive notification. Hard copies of the agenda will be available in the meeting room, on the day of the meeting, and electronic copies are available in advance at: broward.org/Commission/Pages/Meetings.aspx.
Speaking at Public Hearings
- Any member of the public may participate in the discussion held at public hearings. Discussion is limited to the subject being discussed, as listed on the Agenda. If you require communication aids, please contact the Office of the County Administrator at 954-357-7350 or Hearing Impaired/TTY 954-831-3940.
- Public Hearings are advertised according to law and are generally held on the second Tuesday of each month at 2 p.m. Zoning Public Hearings are quasi-judicial (see below) and held on the fourth Tuesday of each month at 2 p.m.
- Certain items on the Commission’s agenda are quasi-judicial in nature. Speakers must be sworn before addressing the Commission and are subject to cross-examination. If the speaker refuses to submit to cross-examination, the Commission will not consider the speaker’s comments in its final deliberations.
Each speaker shall, when recognized by the Mayor or other presiding officer, step up to the speaker’s lectern and state his/her name, address, who she/he represents, and, if asked, whether he/she is being compensated by the persons(s) or organization(s) for which she/he speaks. The Mayor establishes the length of time allotted to speak. Three minutes is the usual time allocated for each speaker. Multiple speakers signed up to address the Commission on the same item or topic cannot consolidate their individual time allocations or yield their time to another speaker. No catcalls from the audience, no booing, and no applause before, during or after a speaker’s comments will be tolerated. Any person making impertinent or slanderous remarks or who becomes boisterous while addressing the Commission shall be barred from further audience before the Commission by the presiding officer, unless permission to continue or again address the Commission is granted by majority vote of the Commission members present. Any person who refuses to stop talking or yield the floor upon expiration of the time allotted by the Mayor may be physically removed by security or law enforcement officials. No signs or posters are allowed in the Chambers. Thank you for your cooperation.
Meetings are conducted pursuant to the Broward County Administrative Code, Chapter 18, Part I
If you require communication aids, please contact the Office of the County Administrator at 954-357-7350, or for Hearing Impaired/TTY 954-831-3940.
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