Zanesville City Council Amends Speaking Rules

Zanesville City Council Amends Speaking Rules

by Katie Donovan on August 24, 2015

Zanesville City Council held their second annual meeting for the month of August.

An ordinance amending the Chapter 111 of the Codified Ordinances was up for its third reading and passed through Councils voting. President of Zanesville City Council, Dan Vincent said the ordinance came about because of community members requesting clarification of the rules. Vincent explained how the rules is now different.

“Tonight the main change were two things. Just clarification of wording as far as speaking on–submitting one petition for one item. It wasn’t as clear as it could be and that came out of a public meeting.” Said Vincent, “The second change then had to do with a submission with a petition to speak before Council on a non-agenda item and that requirement changed to fifteen minutes before Council speaks.”

Vincent said meetings are very busy and the extra time to get petitions in order prior is helpful. Other things that were mentioned in the amended ordinance was a request for those to use respectful language when addressing Council. Some area residents got up to speak and express their concerns. Larry Emerson, a resident of Dresden spoke in opposition to the ordinance this evening. He shared his thoughts with us.

“It is a compromise. It’s not a terrible bill. It could be tweaked and made a little bit better.” Explained Emerson, “Im not jumping up and down and screaming. It’s not a terrible bill and it’s getting better with every amendment they added to it which I would have liked to have seen them put it off for another couple of weeks and made it just a little bit better.”

Emerson feels that the way the ordinance is amended now, will make it so that he will have to take extra trips to town in order to sign up to address Council. Vincent addressed this concern and said they are looking for a way to make it easier for citizens by potentially offering an online resource. The new speaking rules will not go into effect for another thirty days.