Starting this month, visitors to meetings can speak for two extra minutes.
Thursday, March 1, 2012
Got something to say to the Easton Area School Board? Starting this month, you'll have more time to say it. The board voted Tuesday to extend the amount of time a member of the public can speak during the meeting's public comment section from three minutes to five minutes. Board member Frank Pintabone -- who had campaigned partially on the idea of adding to the public comment period -- told the Express-Times he thinks extending the comment period will expose the board to new ideas and "start to put a little more trust in this new board." In a poll last month, a majority of our readers said the board should extend the comment period.
The Easton Area School Board could give the public more time to speak at meetings. What do you think?
For years, speaking during the public comment portion of an Easton Area School Board meeting meant playing a game of "Beat the Clock." The board limits each speaker to three minutes; go beyond that, and an alarm sounds, telling you that your time is up. But now some board members want to change that. As Zach Lindsey of the Express-Times reported Saturday, board members are exploring getting rid of the time restriction for public comment. "If we take another 40 minutes or an hour because we're listening to concerned citizens, then so be it," said board member Frank Pintabone. There are questions board members need to answer first: If they remove the amount of time someone has to talk, does that mean limiting the number of people who can …