Lafayette Councils Agree to Set Time Limits on Meetings
As scintillating as watching government in action versus government inaction can be, we all need to be able to shut things down in a timely manner. That's apparently what the Lafayette City and Parish Councils believe too if I might be so bold as to draw a conclusion from last night's meetings of both government bodies.
Both the Parish and City Councils adopted an ordinance that would set time limits for their meetings. The meetings of the Parish Council will now be capped at 90 minutes. The meetings of the City Council will now be capped at four hours. The ordinance to set time limits came after several meetings earlier this year that did not end until well past midnight.
Just to be clear, the newly adopted ordinance does allow for some wiggle room. Each council does have the option to extend their meetings by 30 extra minutes if needed.
Of course, a time limit means that time becomes more precious during the gatherings of these elected officials. In order to ensure that the councils have time to conduct business and to hear from concerned citizens, public comments are now capped at three minutes. That's two minutes less than the current five minutes allotted.
This simply means that those wishing to address either council will need to come into the council chambers prepared to get to the point. Which, at least in my opinion, is not a bad thing.