9323 BB - Meeting Conduct

Bylaws of the Board
Board Bylaw No. 9323
Bylaw Adopted:  December 12, 2019
Revised: October 19, 2023


Meeting Procedures
All Governing Board meetings shall begin on time and shall be guided by an agenda prepared in accordance with Board bylaws and posted and distributed in accordance with the Ralph M. Brown Act (open meeting requirements) and other applicable laws.
(cf. 9322 - Agenda/Meeting Materials)

The Board president shall conduct Board meetings in accordance with Board bylaws and procedures that enable the Board to efficiently consider issues and carry out the will of the majority. (cf. 9121 - President)

The Board believes that late night meetings deter public participation, can affect the Board's decision-making ability, and can be a burden to staff. Regular Board meetings shall be adjourned before 10:00 p.m. unless extended to a first specific time determined by a majority of the Board. After 9:30 p.m. and before 10:00 p.m. a board member make make a motion to extend the meeting to the first specific time approved by a majority of the board. On a motion by a board member thirty-minutes before the expiration of the first specific time, the meeting may extend to a second specific time approved by super majority of the board. The meeting shall be extended no more than twice, and may be adjourned to a later date.
(cf. 9320 - Meetings and Notices)

Quorum and Abstentions
The Board shall act by majority vote of all membership constituting the Board. (Education Code 35164) The Board believes that when no conflict of interest requires abstention, its members have a duty to vote on issues before them. When a member abstains, his/her abstention shall not be counted for purposes of determining whether a majority of the membership of the Board has taken action. (cf. 9270 - Conflict of Interest)

Public Participation
Members of the public are encouraged to attend Board meetings and to address the Board concerning any item on the agenda or within the Board’s jurisdiction. So as not to inhibit public participation, persons attending Board meetings shall not be requested to sign in, complete a questionnaire, or otherwise provide their name or other information as a condition of attending the meeting.

In order to conduct district business in an orderly and efficient way, the Board requires that public presentation to the Board comply with the following procedures:

1. The Board shall give members of the public an opportunity to address the Board on any item of interest to the public that is within the subject matter jurisdiction of the Board, either before or during the Board's consideration of the item. (Education Code 35145.5, Government Code 54954.3)

2. At a time so designated on the agenda at a regular meeting, members of the public may bring before the Board matters that are not listed on the agenda. The Board shall take no action or discussion on any items not appearing on the posted agenda, except as authorized by law. (Education Code 35145.5, Government Code 54954.2)
(cf. 9323.2 - Actions by the Board)

3. Without taking action, Board members or district staff members may briefly respond to statements made or questions posed by the public about items not appearing on the agenda. Additionally, on their own initiative or in response to questions posed by the public, a Board or staff member may ask a question for< clarification, make a brief announcement, or make a brief report on his/her own activities.

Furthermore, the Board or a Board member may provide a reference to staff or other resources for factual information, ask staff to report back to the Board at a subsequent meeting concerning any matter, or take action directing staff to place a matter of business on a future agenda. (Government Code 54954.2)

4. The Board need not allow the public to speak on any item that has already been considered by a committee composed exclusively of Board members at a public meeting where the public had the opportunity to address the committee on that item. However, if the Board determines that the item has been substantially changed since the committee heard it, the Board shall provide an opportunity for the public to speak. (Government Code 54954.3)
(cf. 9130 - Board Committees)

5. A person wishing to be heard by the Board shall first be recognized by the president and shall then proceed to comment as briefly as the subject permits.

Individual speakers will be allowed three minutes to address the Board on each agenda or nonagenda item and the Board may limit the total time for public input on each agenda item or nonagenda item to 20 minutes. However, in exceptional circumstances when necessary to ensure full opportunity for public input, the president may, with Board consent, adjust the time allowed for public input and/or the time allotted for each speaker. Any such adjustment shall be done equitably so as to allow a diversity of viewpoints. The president may also ask members of the public with the same viewpoint to select a few individuals to address the Board on behalf of that viewpoint.

In order to ensure that non-English speakers receive the same opportunity to address the Board, any member of the public who utilizes a translator shall be provided at least twice the allotted time to address the Board, unless simultaneous translation equipment is used to allow the Board to hear the translated public testimony simultaneously. (Government Code 54954.3)

6. The Board president may rule on the appropriateness of a topic, subject to the following conditions:

a. If the topic would be more suitably addressed at a later time, the president may indicate the time and place when it should be presented.

b. The Board shall not prohibit public criticism of its policies, procedures, programs, services, acts or omissions.

c. The Board shall not not prohibit public criticism of district employees. However, whenever a member of the public initiates specific complaints or charges against an individual employee, the Board presidents shall inform the complainant of the appropriate complaint procedure.
(cf. 1312.1 - Complaints Concerning District Employees
(cf. 9321 - Closed Session Purposes and Agendas)

7. The Board president shall not permit any disturbance or willful interruption. Persistent disruption by an individual or group shall be grounds for the chair to terminate the privilege of addressing the Board. The Board may remove disruptive individuals and order the room cleared if necessary; in this case, members of the media not participating in the disturbance should be allowed to remain, and individuals not participating in such disturbances may be allowed to remain at the discretions of the Board. When the room is ordered cleared due to a disturbance, further Board proceedings shall concern only matters appearing on the agenda. (Government Code 54957.9)

When such disruptive conduct occurs, the Superintendent or designee shall contact local law enforcement.
(cf. 9324 - Minutes and Recordings)

Recording by the Public
Members of the public may record an open Board meeting using an audio or video recorders, still or motion picture camera, cell phone, or other device, provided that the noise, illumination, or obstruction of view does not persistently disrupt the meeting. The Superintendent or designee may designate locations from which members of the public may broadcast, photograph or tape record open meetings without causing a distraction. If the Board finds that noise, illumination, or obstruction of view related to these activities would persistently disrupt the proceedings, these activities shall be discontinued or restricted as determined by the Board. (Government Code 54953.5)

Legal Reference:
5095 Powers of remaining board members and new appointees
32210 Willful disturbance of public school or meeting a misdemeanor
35010 Prescription and enforcement of rules
35145.5 Agenda; public participation; regulations
35163 Official actions, minutes and journal
35164 Vote requirements
35165 Effect of vacancies upon majority and unanimous votes by seven member board
54953.5 Audio or video tape recording of proceedings
54953.6 Broadcasting of proceedings
54954.2 Agenda; posting; action on other matters
54954.3 Opportunity for public to address legislative body; regulations
54957.9 Disorderly conduct of general public during meeting; clearing of room
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