WRBA Town Hall Meeting – Guest Speaker SOP


This week, the WRBA reviewed their Guest Speaker SOP – written guidelines as to how we handle the order of selection of speakers at the WRBA meetings. We fully appreciate the time our representatives take to speak with us and by having written guidelines, there is less room for error – and less chance of the board accidentally offending any parties.

For this SOP, we have broken up the parties into the following groups which will also serve as a hierarchy:

(1) Elected Officials

(2) Representatives of Elected Officials

(3) Officially Declared Candidates for Public Office

(4) Members of Recognized Organizations

(5) Private Citizens

And within Categories (1) through (3) we will have a secondary hierarchy:

(a) Federal

(b) State

(c) City

(d) Borough

Item 1. Any person belonging to one of the above categories can request the opportunity to speak beforehand, via email or telephone. Also, at the sign-in desk, there will also be a separate Pad where people can sign in, asking for the opportunity to address our residents. Once the meeting has begun, the list will be delivered to the person running the meeting.

Item 2. All speakers will be asked to limit their remarks to around 5 minutes. We should discreetly keep track of the time and gently let them know when they have 1 minute left.

Item 3. After the speaker is finished, the Board Members should be given first chance to ask questions. Then it should be opened to the residents. The board members should always try to limit their questions to ensure that the residents get to speak.

Item 4. The Elected Officials are recognized and asked to speak first, in order of the hierarchy, as described in the note above. Next, the representatives of Elected Officials (in order of the hierarchy). Then, the Declared Candidates (in order of the hierarchy). This is followed by the Members of Recognized Organizations, and then Private Citizens.

Item 5. Should any persons that fall within Group 1, 2 or 3 show up late, and their turn has passed, they will be slotted into the very next available slot (i.e. they will speak next).

Item 6. Only persons from Groups 1, 2, 3 and 4 — and invited guests — will address the residents from the front of the room. Private citizens shall address the residents from the audience.

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2 Responses to “WRBA Town Hall Meeting – Guest Speaker SOP”

  1. Susan Farrell Says:

    Sounds a little harsh; but I guess you have to set a limit. I agree it does sway. SOP is important.
    CB#9 also has basically the same procedures; but I have never seen them in print. I have been to town hall meetings before who have handed out note paper to the audience so you can write down your question ahead of time. This may avoid duplicate questions.

  2. Woodhaven Town Hall Meeting « Wrba's Blog Says:

    […] get a few elected officials and candidates.  The Woodhaven Residents Block Association has an SOP for guest speakers — guidelines that we ask that they all […]

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