FRAMINGHAM – The rules subcommittee of the newly-elected Framingham City Council is proposed Tuesday night meetings and the create of seven permanent subcommittees for the full 11-member City Council to approve Wednesday night, December 6.
The temporary rules subcommittee, appointed by newly-elected City Council Chair Dennis Giombetti, met twice in November. Members of the subcommittee on rules are George King. Judy Grove, and Pam Richardson.
The goal of the temporary rules subcommittee was to “establish basic rules and a structure to allow the council to operate over the next six months,” said King. “During this time the permanent Rules Committee will develop our final in-depth rules. We reviewed rules and procedures from several different communities and found them to have many commonalities. Much of our work to establish basic temporary rules is borrowed from these communities.”
The temporary rules committee will recommend the 11-member City Council meet on the first and third Tuesday of each month, with meetings starting at 7 p.m.
The rules committee is suggesting the Council adopt seating for the Councilors at its meetings. The proposal is the “council seats from left to right will be
numbered 1-11. The Vice Chairman of the council will sit in seat 5 and the Chairman in seat 6. The remaining councilors will randomly select their seats by
drawing before or at the beginning of the council term. The seating assignment will remain for the duration of the two-year term.”
Another rules is that no new agenda item will begin at 10 p.m. with a 2/3rds vote of the full City Council present at any given meeting.
Another aspect the rules committee discussed was creating permanent subcommittees. The committee is recommended seven subcommittees, including one required by the charter – finance.
The Committees are:
- Finance – 5 members – The Finance subcommittee will be responsible for all matters assigned to it by the Charter. In addition any matter of the council that is financial in nature can be referred to the committee.
- Appointments – 5 members – The committee will review and make recommendations to the Council on all mayoral appointments that are subject to Council oversight.
- Economic Development – 5 members – The committee may review all matters related to economic development in the purview of the council.
- Rules – 3 members – The committee will develop final and permanent rules for the council and review and recommend changes as necessary.
- Education – 3 members – The committee will serve as the City Council’s liaison to the School Committee and the Framingham Public Schools and may review any related matter within the purview of the City Council.
- Environment – 3 members – The committee will deal with any environmental sustainability or policy matters in the purview of the council.
- Planning and Zoming – 3 members – The committee will review and make recommendations to the full council regarding any planning and zoning bylaws and related issues that are in the purview of the council.
The rules subcommitte will also recommend the following:
1) The City Council Chair will appoint the membership of all subcommittees as provided for in the charter.
2) The Chair will appoint the chairman of each council subcommittee, and the chairman of each subcommittee will appoint the vice chair with the approval of
the Council chair.
3) The Chair will strive to appoint subcommittees to reflect the diversity of the Council.
4) All matters considered by council committees must be referred to the committee by the Chair or a majority vote of the council members present at the meeting.
5) Special Committees for a specific purpose may be authorized at any time by majority vote and shall be appointed by the Chair. Membership and organization of
Special Committees should follow Rules 1-4 above.
6) Any employee appointed directly by the Council will be reviewed by an ad hoc committee appointed by the Chair for that specific purpose, final approval
subject to majority vote of the Council.
7) All positions on multi-member boards appointed directly by the Council will be initially reviewed by the subcommittee on appointments with final approval subject to a majority vote of the Council.
The temporray rules committee is suggesting the Council adopt the following agenda for meetings
a. Public Participation—Board of Selectmen procedure will be used until revised
b. Public Hearings
c. Report of the Mayor
d. Report of the Council Chair
e. Reports of Subcommittee Chairs
f. Old Business
g. New Business
And finally, the rules committee is suggesting the new City of Framingham City Council adopt Roberts Rules of Order will be used as guidance for parliamentary procedure.