City Council Standing Committees

Included below is information pertaining to City Council Standing Committees per the Rules of Council.


RULE VII – STANDING COMMITTEES

Section 1.  Purpose.  Council shall create Standing Committees whose primary purpose shall be to consider and recommend to Council action on ordinances, resolutions and policies relating to the matters within the subject matter area of each such Standing Committee. The Mayor and Council shall endeavor to distribute responsibility as evenly as possible among the Council Members and in no event shall an individual Council Member serve as Chairperson of more than one Standing Committee. The principle of seniority shall be respected by the Mayor and Council in the assignment of Chairperson and Vice Chairperson of each Standing Committee.


Section 2. The Standing Committees. The following Standing Committees are established:

A. Education, Health and Human Services. The Committee on Education, Health and Human Services is responsible for monitoring and recommending to Council official policies on all matters concerning public education, recreation, welfare, social services, youth affairs, homelessness, senior services, disability services, public health, mental health services, substance abuse services, environmental health and human advocacy.

Committee Members:  Councilmember Treska Wilson-Smith, Councilmember Annette Smith-Lee


B. Economic Development, Tourism, Land Use and Housing. The Committee on Economic Development, Tourism, Land Use and Housing is responsible for monitoring and recommending to Council official policies on all matters concerning small and local business development, economic development, industrial development, commercial development, public utilities, transportation, tourism and cultural affairs. The Committee on Economic Development, Tourism, Land Use and Housing is responsible for monitoring and recommending to Council official policies on all matters concerning land use planning, environmental issues, housing, rental housing, neighborhood revitalization, urban affairs, homelessness (together with the Committee on Education, Health and Human Services) and historic preservation.

Committee Members: Mayor Samuel Parham, Councilmember Howard Myers


C. Judiciary and Public Safety. The Committee on Judiciary and Public Safety is responsible for monitoring and recommending to Council official policies on all matters concerning the judiciary, judicial procedure, elections, law enforcement, fire safety, ambulance services, emergency medical services, emergency communication and public safety.

Committee Members: Vice Mayor John Hart, Sr., Councilmember Charlie Cuthbert

 

D. Committee of the Whole. The Committee of the Whole is responsible for the financial health of the City, including its annual budget and budgetary processes, its taxation, revenue and expense structures, and its internal fiscal controls.  The Committee of the Whole is responsible for discharging Council’s responsibilities for the financial management of the City of Petersburg. The Committee of the Whole will enhance the credibility and objectivity of internal and external financial reporting, manage strategic risks and protection of the City of Petersburg’s financial assets and resources, review reports of internal and external auditors, improve the effectiveness of the audit functions, and address any problems or problem areas revealed through or by any of the foregoing actions. The Mayor shall serve as Chairperson of the Committee of the Whole, and the Vice Mayor shall serve as Vice Chairperson of the Committee of the Whole.


Section 3.  Composition; Selection; Vacancies. Section 3 of Rule VII shall not apply to the Committee of the Whole. At the organizational meeting of Council at the beginning of each

Council period, the Mayor shall nominate the Chairperson and Vice Chairperson of each Standing Committee. The Mayor shall also nominate a sufficient number of Council Members to serve on each Standing Committee based on the anticipated needs of the City of Petersburg for the Council period. Council, by resolution, shall act on the Mayor’s nominations. The Mayor may serve as an ex officio voting member of each Standing Committee. The Mayor may be counted for purposes of a quorum, but does not increase the quorum requirement for a Standing Committee. Whenever a vacancy occurs in the membership of a Standing Committee, the Mayor shall nominate a Council Member to fill the vacancy and Council, by resolution, shall act on the Mayor’s nomination.


Section 4. Terms and Removals. Terms of office for all Chairpersons, Vice Chairpersons, and members of the Standing Committees shall be for a term not to exceed one term of Council. So long as they remain Council Members, Chairpersons, Vice Chairpersons, and members of the Standing Committees shall continue in office unless and until their successors are appointed.  Should any member of any Standing Committee fail to attend three (3) regular meetings of any of his or her Standing Committees, the Chairperson shall report such unexcused absences to the Mayor, who may introduce a resolution for Council’s action to remove the member from the Standing Committee.


Section 5. Meetings.  Standing Committees shall hold such meetings and hearings as they deem necessary in order to carry out their functions. Each Standing Committee shall hold at least one regular meeting, if practicable, each month in which there is scheduled a regular meeting of Council. Standing Committees should endeavor to schedule these required monthly meetings so that they meet regularly on the same day and time each month; provided, however that the regular meetings of each Standing Committee shall not conflict with the regular meetings of any other Standing Committee. Special meetings of each Standing Committee may be called by a majority of the members of such Standing Committee.


Section 6.  Participation of Council Members in Standing Committee Meetings. Any Council Member may attend the meeting of any Standing Committee and may participate in committee discussions; however, Council Members who are not members of such Standing Committee may not make a motion or cast a vote on any matters before such Standing Committee. Any Council Member may participate fully in a hearing or roundtable (including a panel of experts or community residents) of any Standing Committee.


Section 7. Quorum and Voting. A majority of each Standing Committee shall constitute a quorum for the transaction of business, unless otherwise required by law or ordinance. The vote of a majority of members of each Standing Committee shall be required to approve any matter before such Standing Committee.


Section 8.  Minutes and Recordkeeping.  As described in Section 11 of Rule VII, the City Manager shall appoint staff members to serve as the clerks for the Standing Committees. The clerk of each Standing Committee shall keep a neat and accurate journal of the proceedings of the Standing Committee to which he or she is assigned, and shall be the custodian thereof. After the minutes are read and approved by the Standing Committee, the minutes shall be signed by the Chairperson of such Standing Committee and the clerk of such Standing Committee shall file the minutes with the Clerk as provided in Section 5 of Rule II.


Section 9.  Agenda. The Chairperson of each Standing Committee shall prepare an agenda for each regularly scheduled meeting of such Standing Committee. Any member of the Standing Committee may request that items be placed on a meeting agenda by contacting the Chairperson of such Standing Committee at least seven (7) days prior to the Standing Committee meeting at which such member wishes to discuss the requested item(s). The Chairperson of such Standing Committee shall place any requested items on the agenda for the next regularly scheduled meeting following the request. Council may place items on the agenda of a Standing Committee if the request is in the form of a motion, voted upon by a majority of Council. The Mayor will refer matters to the Standing Committees in accordance with Rule VIII.


Section 10. Standing Committee Rules. In addition to this Rule VII, each Standing Committee shall adopt written rules, not inconsistent with these Rules of Council or other applicable law. Each Standing Committee shall develop rules, which shall include the following requirements:

A.  The scheduling of regular meeting days for conducting business;

B.  A procedure for rescheduling or cancelling a regular meeting;

C.  A procedure for holding additional meetings to be called by the Chairperson;

D.  A procedure for holding special meetings, which shall be called at the request of a majority of the members of the Standing Committee;

E.  Procedures to govern the chair of a committee meeting in the absence of the Chairperson and Vice Chairperson;

F.   Procedures for keeping a complete record of all action of the Standing Committee, including roll-call votes;

G.  If, at the time of approval of a measure by a Standing Committee, a member of the Standing Committee gives notice of the intention to submit supplemental, minority, or additional views, that member shall be entitled to not less than five (5) business days within which to file the views, which shall be included in the report of the Standing Committee on the measure;

H. A procedure for amending the Standing Committee rules by a vote of a majority of the Standing Committee;

I   A requirement that if an oral amendment is moved during a Standing Committee meeting, it shall, upon request by a member, be reduced to writing and read by the staff of the Standing Committee, and made available for public inspection as soon as practicable;

J. A requirement for the circulation of notice of the date, hour, and place of all Standing Committee meetings to all Council Members at least 24 hours before the date of the meeting, along with a copy of the agenda of the meeting, a draft of any measures to be considered, and, if applicable, a comparative print showing, by italic, underscore, strikethrough, or other typographical device, the changes proposed; except, that when a new section, or greater part is being added, such as a new chapter or title, a comparative print shall not be required but a reference to the new section or part shall be included in the committee-activity report of the Standing Committee;

K. A procedure for providing at least 24 hours' notice of the cancellation of a Standing Committee meeting;

L.  A procedure to ensure that meetings of the Standing Committee do not conflict with a previously scheduled meeting of another Standing Committee as required by Section 5 of this Rule VII; and

M. A procedure for the adoption of a consent agenda.


Section 11. Standing Committee Staffing. With respect to each Standing Committee, the City Manager will appoint an agency of the City of Petersburg to provide administrative support and assistance to such Standing Committee. The City Manager shall appoint a staff member of the appointed agency to serve as a clerk for each Standing Committee. The clerk of each Standing Committee will serve as the liaison between the appointed agency and the Standing Committee to which such agency was appointed. Council, Council Members and the Standing Committees shall deal with the administrative staff of an appointed agency solely through the clerk of such Standing Committee, and shall not give orders publicly or privately to any subordinate of the clerk of such Standing Committee.


Section 12. Standing Committee Activity Report. Each Standing Committee shall file a committee-activity report before the end of each Council period that details such Standing Committee’s oversight and legislative activities. The format and content of the committee-activity report shall be determined by the Clerk.


Section 13. Subcommittees. As necessary, Council may establish subcommittees of the Standing Committees. The Mayor shall nominate the Chairperson, Vice Chairperson and members of each subcommittee. Council shall, by resolution, act on the Mayor’s nominations.


RULE VIII – PROCEDURES FOR COMMITTEE REFERRAL

Section 1. Referral to the Standing Committees. The Mayor shall refer each ordinance or resolution to be introduced at each regular meeting of Council to a Standing Committee for consideration and recommendation as provided herein. The Clerk shall read the heading of each ordinance and resolution introduced, and announce the Standing Committee to which it has been referred along with the date and time of the public meeting at which the Standing Committee will consider the ordinance or resolution.


Section 2.  When Referral is Excused.

A. Each ordinance and resolution shall be referred to the appropriate Standing Committee for consideration and recommendation by that Standing Committee prior to any vote by Council on that ordinance or resolution.

B. Notwithstanding the foregoing, if, prior to the regular meeting of Council at which an ordinance or resolution would be referred to a Standing Committee, both the Mayor and the Chairperson of the appropriate Standing Committee agree that such ordinance or resolution shall not be referred to a Standing Committee as provided in this Rule VIII, the Clerk shall instead schedule such ordinance or resolution for the next appropriate regular meeting of Council and announce such ordinance or resolution at the same.

C. The requirements of this Section 2 of Rule VIII shall not apply to appointments and reappointments to Standing Committees; however, Council may refer such appointments to an appropriate Standing Committee by adopting a motion to refer the matter to a Standing Committee.


Section 3. Sequential Review by the Standing Committees. The Mayor may refer an ordinance or resolution, or any part of an ordinance or resolution, to more than one Standing Committee for sequential consideration and recommendation. When there is a sequential referral, the Mayor may make the referral and specify a time period within which one or more of the Standing Committees must report the measure. If a Standing Committee fails to report such recommendations as provided by Section 5 of Rule VIII within the specified time period, the measure shall be deemed discharged from the Standing Committee and the Clerk shall provide notice that the measure is ready for subsequent action by another Standing Committee or to be scheduled for consideration by Council at the next regular meeting of Council.


Section 4. Consideration by the Standing Committees. Unless another time period is specified by the Mayor pursuant to Section 3 of Rule VIII above, each Standing Committee shall consider each ordinance and resolution referred to it, holding such public hearings as it deems appropriate, and make a recommendation to Council as provided by Section 5 of Rule VIII within sixty (60) days of the referral of that ordinance or resolution to such Standing Committee.


Section 5. Recommendation by the Standing Committees. Following its consideration of an ordinance or resolution, each Standing Committee shall vote to recommend that Council adopt, amend or strike the ordinance or resolution. In the alternative, the Standing Committee may vote to make no recommendation. The Standing Committee shall compile a report of all such recommendations, which shall include, for each ordinance or resolution considered, (i) the recommendation, (ii) the vote and (iii) the text of any recommended amendment, if any. The Standing Committee shall issue such report to Council, the Clerk, the City Attorney and such other parties as may be appropriate. If a majority of the Standing Committee’s members recommend that Council strike the ordinance or resolution, a motion to strike the ordinance or resolution shall be included with the amendments to the agenda considered at the next appropriate regular meeting of Council. If the Standing Committee fails (i) to make a recommendation by majority vote, whether due to the absence of one or more of its members or otherwise, or (ii) to make a recommendation by any vote within the sixty-day period as required by Section 4 of Rule VIII, the affected ordinance or resolution shall be scheduled for consideration by Council at the next appropriate regular meeting of Council.


Section 6. Advertisement by the Clerk. Upon the introduction of an ordinance or
resolution, the Clerk shall schedule the ordinance or resolution for the next regular meeting of Council following the meeting of the Standing Committee to which the ordinance or resolution is referred and shall publish such advertisements as required by applicable law for such ordinance or resolution.


Section 7. Override of Recommendation to Strike. Any Council Member may move to override a Standing Committee’s recommendation to strike an ordinance or resolution. Such motion shall require a simple majority to prevail. If such motion prevails, the ordinance or resolution shall not be stricken, and Council shall consider such ordinance or resolution at the regular meeting of Council for which it is scheduled.