December 14, 2009

County To Expand Public Comment Period

There is so much rhetoric in political circles these days that centers around transparency in government. The public demands more of it, and elected officials are always campaigning on it. Unfortunately, all too often the talk is just that.

The Niagara County Legislature, however, is apparently moving ahead with improving transparency in government with a resolution on the agenda to expand the public comment period.

Currently the public is allowed to speak for three minutes on any item on the agenda or for anything in the best interest of the county at the beginning of the meeting.

For years, the regular speakers at the county legislature have complained that the three minute rule was unfair, that they needed more time to make their points. Obviously the county legislators heard they're complaints and are now opening up a public comment session at the end of the meeting that does not carry the same time restriction.

Kudos to the county legislature for taking a definitive step in the right direction.

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