Commissioner Michael Shane Wilcher will be asking the full Warren County Commission to consider changing its procedure to allow time to hear public comments during each monthly meeting.
“I am asking that my motion, or resolution if it needs to be written as such by our county’s taxpayer-paid attorneys, to allow a time of public comments at every County Commission meeting be added to the March 2016 docket or agenda,” said Wilcher.
The request comes after Wilcher made a failed motion during this month’s meeting to allow public comment, which failed 16-7. Among the no votes was Carl D. Bouldin, who suggested the measure might have passed if Wilcher had included the number of individuals who would be allowed to speak and how long each would be allowed to speak.
The city of McMinnville allows time to hear public comment during its meetings held on the second and fourth Tuesdays of each month. Called “Recognition of Visitors,” people are allowed three minutes to speak on any subject they wish.
“As elected officials of Warren County, we owe the people no less,” said Wilcher, of the city allowing public comment. “The people deserve to be heard publicly more than just in election years and I hope other commissioners will stand with me to give the people that option.”
Citizens at this month’s County Commission meeting wanted to express concerns for the welfare of animals at Warren County Animal Control. Those concerns stem from comments made by Commissioner Michael Martin during a Health and Welfare Committee in which he stated the facility’s name should not be changed to reflect a focus on adoption.
Wilcher says he will make a second motion, that being for Warren County Executive Herschel Wells to remove Martin as Health and Welfare Committee chair.
“I also want a motion or resolution, depending on which is appropriate and to be determined by our county’s taxpayer-paid attorneys, to request, urge, direct, or demand the county executive immediately appoint a new chairman to the Health and Welfare Committee,” Wilcher said.
Committee appointments, as well as which commissioner is chair of the committee, are determined by the county executive.
Warren County’s next monthly meeting of the full commission is March 21 at 6:30 p.m.