With the public being asked to “Stay Home to Save Lives” and stop the spread of the coronavirus, City of San Marcos officials are offering new ways to “attend” public meetings and offer comments virtually.
Interim City Clerk Tammy Cook said her team has been exploring virtual methods for the public to continue to actively participate in municipal government while respecting the Order from Governor Greg Abbott to stay at home unless conducting essential functions. Mayor Jane Hughson also signed a Public Health Advisory yesterday which reiterates the importance of staying home when possible but connecting with others through virtual tools.
“In our current reality, virtual meetings and public comment options are a necessity,” Cook said, “both to comply with Open Meetings laws and to encourage our residents to remain engaged in the decisions and actions being taken by their elected leaders.”
The public may view all scheduled public meetings, such as City Council, Planning & Zoning Commission (P&Z) and the Historic Preservation Commission (HPC), online from the city’s website at the following links:
- Send written comments which will be read aloud; or
- Request a link to join in the public hearing portion of the virtual meeting.
Citizens who join a public hearing virtually will participate via Zoom; instructions for joining a virtual meeting will be emailed. All submitted or spoken comments shall have a time limit of three minutes each.
- Written comments and/or requests to join in a City Council public hearing must be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org no later than 12 p.m. (Noon) on the day of the meeting.
- Written comments and/or requests to join either Planning & Zoning or Historic Preservation public hearingshould be sent to email@example.com by
1 p.m. the day of the meeting.
Persons wishing to “speak” during the citizen comment period of a public meeting must submit their written comments in advance. Timely submitted comments will be read aloud during the citizen comment portion of the meeting.
- Written comments for a City Council meeting must be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org no later than 12 p.m. on the day of the meeting.
- Written comments for Planning & Zoning Commission and Historic Preservation Commission meetings should be sent to email@example.com by 1 p.m. the day of the meeting.
“Comments, whether during public hearings or public comment periods, shall have a time limit of three minutes each,” Cook said. “Any threatening, defamatory or other similar comments prohibited by Chapter 2 of the San Marcos City Code will not be read.”
Additional information is available on our website:
For City Council Comments: https://sanmarcostx.gov/citizencomments
For P&Z Comments: https://sanmarcostx.gov/PlanningandZoningComments
For Historic Preservation Comments: https://sanmarcostx.gov/HistoricPreservationComments
For media inquiries, contact firstname.lastname@example.org.