Streamlining ANC 6B Meetings

While ANC 6B meeting agendas change, one thing typically stays the same: the meetings are too long.  A 7 pm meeting that ends at 10 or 10:30 has been a common occurrence for ANC 6B. Excessively long meetings are not good for public participation. A number of residents have complained that they miss key portions of the agenda because they have to leave at 9 or 9:30.
During tomorrow night’s commission meeting, we will debate my proposal to introduce a consent agenda at future commission meetings. A consent agenda is a tool that allows governmental bodies and boards to approve a list of noncontroversial or mundane items as a group at the beginning of a meeting.  Items can be on the consent agenda only if all commission members agree; any one commissioner can remove an item from the consent agenda prior to its adoption. You can read more about my proposed consent agenda on the ANC 6B website (12th  item on the list).
While a consent agenda will not solve all of our time issues, it will allow the commission to focus meeting time and discussion on controversial issues, the issues that typically draw residents to our meetings in the first place.

3 Responses to Streamlining ANC 6B Meetings

  1. Thom says:

    The consent calendar is both long overdue, and the way Commissioner Flahaven has fashioned it is elegant and well-thought-out.

    I’d go further. All Commissioners are free to attend Planning and Zoning Commission and ABC Commission meetings, make their points, and vote. There is no need to rehash those debates in their entirety again at the full commission meeting.

    HPO and HPRB and ABRA all have staff to enforce the regulations, and ANC-6B’s job is only to insure those staff are doing their job on behalf of our neighborhood. It is not the job of ANC-6B to serve as amateur staff members on those city regulatory commissions. Way too much time is wasted listening to commissioners’ opinions about their preferences regarding, for example, the proper proportions between windows and doors.

    I hope at some time in the future, ANC-6B will consider corralling planning and zoning discussions to Commissioner Campbell’s committee meeting, and liquor license discussions to Commissioner Greene’s committee meeting, and not feel it’s necessary to have long debates about those agenda items at the full ANC meeting.

  2. John Cochran says:

    I’m all for the consent agenda idea, Brian.

    Thanks for continuing to look for ways to improve the process.

    John C.
    7XX 15th St. SE

  3. Joe Fengler says:

    Brian, great idea. Also, if you put together an ageda package that has all the information for the meeting and make it available to the public, meetings go much faster. Also, implementing a standard two minute rule foe commissioners to make comments on an issue also speeds things along. You may want to take to David Homes, chair if ANC 6A. They have been using this format for almost eight years and they seldom go over two hours.

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