TO: HONORABLE MAYOR AND MEMBERS OF THE CITY COUNCIL
HONORABLE MEMBERS OF THE TRAFFIC SAFETY COMMISSION
FROM: DIRECTOR OF PUBLIC WORKS
DATE: SEPTEMBER 10, 2005
SUBJECT: COMMUNICATIONS BETWEEN THE TRAFFIC SAFETY COMMISSION AND THE CITY COUNCIL
Provide direction to the Traffic Safety Commission regarding written communications between the two bodies.
The Traffic Safety Commission reviews traffic safety issues raised by the public. In some cases decisions of the Traffic Safety Commission are final and not brought to the City Council unless appealed. Items falling into this category include signing, striping, vegetation removal, and some parking restrictions.
In other cases State Law or Council policy require that the City Council make the final decision. In such cases the Traffic Safety Commission hears the item initially, considers alternatives, and recommends a single solution to the City Council. Items falling into this category include traffic calming measures, installation of stop signs, and matters requiring funding authorizations. In the past, when these sorts of items were brought to the City Council the staff report made a single recommendation from the Traffic Safety Commission, with alternative actions listed.
When the City Council formed the new Traffic Safety Commission, the "Charter" included the following language:
Section 7. Communications. The Commission is established by the City Council as a citizens advisory group, with certain specific duties, to enable the Council to more effectively administer the City and to respond to the citizenry.
The Commission is encouraged to formulate and forward alternative proposals to the City Council along with recommendations approved by the majority of the members of the Commission. Minority opinions of Commissioners, in written form, will be considered by the City Council before taking action on any recommendation of the Commission.
It is anticipated that the Commission will make recommendations to the Council through the Director of Public Works and the City Manager. The Commission shall, at all times, have direct access to the City Council through representation at regular City Council meetings, and in other manners as may be prescribed by the Council. The Commission may also request that the City Manager place items of concern on an appropriate City Council agenda.
There is some confusion over whether the City Council is seeking the recommendation of the majority of the Commission on each item (that is forwarded to the City Council) accompanied by "minority opinions" from dissenting Commissioners; or if it is the Councilís preference that the staff reports from the Commission should not include a single recommendation from the Commission, but rather that the Commission should develop a list of potential solutions for consideration by the City Council.
Staff and the Commission believe it would be helpful to receive direction from the City Council on this subject.
Dean E. Allison
Director of Public Works