Coun. Heather Eby would like to see city council handle its committee meetings more efficiently to ensure everyone’s attention is focused on the issues being discussed.
Eby was particularly concerned about how council schedules some of its meetings back to back, she told city council during its Sept. 9 regular meeting. She pointed to the Aug. 12 personnel committee meeting, which began at 4:01 p.m. and had about an hour to finish as much business as possible before the regular council meeting began at 5:30 p.m.
The personnel committee recessed at 5:09 p.m. for the council meeting, but did not reconvene that evening since the in-camera — or private — portion of council’s executive committee meeting went until 10:05 p.m., she continued. Councillors and city hall staff were becoming tired after those five hours, while some municipal staff had been there for six hours.
“I feel after that many hours, we don’t give our best attention on all the agenda items,” Eby said. “I feel any item on the agenda is worth our sharpness.”
Personnel committee members gathered to finish their meeting on Sept. 3; that meeting lasted 96 minutes.
A report is expected to come forward soon that could address this issue, Eby added. She looked forward to discussing that report since she didn’t think the way council stacked its meetings was the best it could do.
Council then voted 6-1 to adopt the minutes of the personnel committee meeting. Coun. Brian Swanson was opposed.
The next regular council meeting is Sept. 23.