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Politics

Public Comment At San Diego Council Meetings Now 2 Days A Week

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The San Diego City Council voted unanimously Tuesday to expand its non-agenda public comment period from one to two days a week.

Traditionally, members of the public could speak for three minutes on Tuesday mornings on any topic that isn't up for discussion at the meeting. However, a member of the public sued in order to have the comment sessions on Mondays as well.

In December, the council tentatively adopted the change on a 9-0 vote. With Tuesday's final approval, non-agenda public comment will now be held Monday afternoons after all the discussion items have been heard, and in the traditional Tuesday morning time slot.

Speakers, however, will be limited to two minutes each. Also, priority will be given to speakers who did not address the council at its most recent meeting.

A final go-ahead was also given to a change in council rules that specifies an election for council president will be held on or after Dec. 10, in order to conform with a recently implemented City Charter amendment.

Voters in June passed a proposition that set Dec. 10 as the normal inauguration day for elected city officials, but the rules for choosing a council president weren't updated. That left open the possibility last month that an outgoing City Council could have picked the leader for an incoming panel.

The council members voted to delay the council president vote until newly elected member Chris Cate took office.

The rules change is expected to prevent further scheduling conflicts.

Both items were approved without comment, as part of the panel's consent calendar.