WHEREAS, the Duluth City Council periodically requests input from agencies outside city staff on controversial issues; and

        WHEREAS, it is the goal of the Duluth City Council to be fair and just in allowing presentations on all subjects involving council decisions; and

        WHEREAS, it is the intent to give all parties concerned on an issue equal opportunity to present their views to this council; and

        WHEREAS, the Duluth City Council has been critical of exclusionary tactics used by some entities, does not want to be exclusionary or give the perception of being exclusionary; and

        WHEREAS, it is a disservice to the citizens of this community when dialogue in a public meeting only addresses one side of an issue; and

        WHEREAS, the Duluth City Council desires to remain in good standing with the public and retain the public's trust.

        NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, that Rule 2 of the standing rules of the city council is hereby amended to read as follows:

                Rule 2.     PUBLIC NOTICE OF MEETINGS.

                2.1     The secretary of the council shall give public notice of the time and place of all special meetings, agenda meetings, committee meetings and public hearings of the council by posting such information in a conspicuous place in the office of the city clerk at least three days prior to the time any such meeting is to be held. If a regular council meeting is to be held at a location other than the council chambers in city hall, the secretary shall give public notice of such change in location in the same manner as specified herein for giving notice of council meetings.

                2.2     When a committee of the council, including a committee of the whole, determines that it will hold a meeting for the purpose of obtaining input from agencies other than city staff, then it shall be the responsibility of the chair of the committee to ensure that all parties aggrieved or interested in all positions of a controversial issue, are invited to attend the meeting. The council will not be exclusionary in its invitation of speakers. The chair shall allow presentations from such agencies only at a meeting of the committee that occurs when all the aggrieved or interested parties referred to above can attend, except as set forth herein. The only time that parties representing one side of such a controversial issue will be allowed to make presentations to the council in the absence of a party entitled to represent another side of the issue is with written confirmation that such opposing party was invited to make a presentation but declined such invitation.

STATEMENT OF PURPOSE:  The purpose of this resolution is to amend the standing rules of the city council to insure that, when the council invites public comment on controversial issues, all sides of the controversy are allowed to fully participate in the process.

It provides that representatives of all sides of a controversial issue shall be invited to be present at meetings intended to receive public input on such issues and prohibits receipt of comment from less than all sides of that issue unless representatives of one or more sides who have been invited to participate decline to do so.