FEDC considers public input policy.
During its regular Nov. 14, 2019 meeting, the Forney Economic Development Corp. met to approve current public input policy, and to extend a redevelopment grant.
- Re: House Bill 2840 - accepted same rules as city council for public input.
Mr. Ketteman briefed the board on the legislation: he said citizens do not have inherent right to public comment, except during Public hearings. First city he worked at in Texas had no public comment, some citizens didn't like that. This new law requires explicit right to speak in public comment, or on each agenda item. Time limits may be set on speakers. Ms. Browning said should be uniform with council. City attorney Mr. Thatcher said the way agendas are now is compliant with new law. The rules and procedures says can open to public comment on each item, if desired. The law requires right for public to speak before any action taken. He suggested they adopt the council rules; limits speakers to 3 minutes. Mr. Ketteman said he prefers allowing speakers before item, in case of long agendas.
He read a portion of the brief from TML Ass't AG Counsel: "a governmental body may not prohibit public criticism of the governmental body, including criticism of any act, omission, policy, procedure, program or service" (the brief also states: "However, the bill does not apply to public criticism that is otherwise prohibited by law." and "Defamation would probably fall under that prohibition.") He stated complaints are part of it, keeps them on task.
Mr. McBeth asked about leaving in the general public comment item in as well. Mr. Ketteman was in favor of that, as that would allow input for non-agenda items.
Approved accepting current rules specified by council.
- Approved a 6-month extension to redevelopment grant for 208 S. Bois d'Arc St.
Mr. Ketteman said this would be the second extension, required by delays. Ms. Ballard explained the issues causing delays. They have started work, still plan to have the Trax general store and old-fashioned soda shop. They have items and vendors in place, just issues w/ contractors, funding and weather.
- Reportedly held a 88-minute executive session, and Adjourned at 2100.
Thursday, 2019, November 14