Number: 800-04

Effective Date:





1 of 3

Staff Contact:

Jay Covington

Approved By:

Ed Prince, Council President


To establish guidelines and procedures for correspondence addressed to the City Council and for the preparation of the Council agenda.


City Councilmembers


Policy & Procedure #800-11, Council Email


4.1    The Council Liaison or his/her designee is authorized to open and examine all mail, postal and electronic, addressed to the Renton City Council. If the mail is addressed or emailed to the personal attention of one individual Councilmember, then the Council Liaison is authorized to open said mail.

4.2    Any Councilmember may address correspondence under New Business on the agenda.

4.3    The City Clerk shall be provided with a copy of all correspondence brought before the Council during a Council meeting.

4.4    Correspondence need not be read aloud and in its entirety at a Council meeting unless requested by a majority vote of the Council.

4.5    All correspondence initially handled by the Council Liaison that has retention value according to the rules of the State Archivist will be forwarded to the City Clerk Division for disposition.


Correspondence (also referred to as “mail”): Any letter, note, facsimile transmission, email message, or any other written or electronic transmission of information or data, and any attachments.


6.1    Mail shall be opened, date-stamped, and logged as required by law. Mail addressed to an individual Councilmember shall be opened and date-stamped by the Council Liaison unless it is identified as personal or confidential, in which case it shall be distributed to the Councilmember unopened. If the correspondence is not personal or confidential or if it relates to City business, the Councilmember will transmit a copy to the Council Liaison. If the Councilmember desires action regarding individually received mail, such as having it referred to the Administration or a Council committee, the Councilmember will directly address the correspondence under New Business on the agenda at an upcoming Council meeting.

6.2    Correspondence shall be logged and sorted into four categories:

6.2.1    Informational correspondence that requires no action:

Correspondence may be forwarded to all Councilmembers. Councilmembers may opt to respond personally to the correspondent. Councilmembers should be careful not to respond in a way that implies he or she is speaking on behalf of the City or the City Council as a legislative body.

6.2.2    Correspondence that requires administrative review and/or action by Mayor or City Department:

Action: Correspondence shall be acknowledged and forwarded to the Mayor and/or appropriate department administrator for review. Copies of the correspondence shall be forwarded to all Councilmembers. Staff responses shall be approved by the Mayor prior to distribution. Copies of the responses shall be forwarded to all Councilmembers and City Clerk.

6.2.3    Correspondence that requires a policy decision or approval by City Council:

Action: Correspondence shall be brought up by a Councilmember under New Business on the agenda for approval, denial, or referral to Council committee or the Administration. If referred, the City Clerk shall notify the department administrator for investigation and response, or request the administrator schedule the item on a Council committee agenda.

6.2.4    Correspondence relating to Public Hearings/Meetings or other items on the Council agenda:

Action: The Presiding Officer may inquire of the City Clerk if any correspondence on the subject of the Public Hearing/Meeting had been received. Acknowledgment of correspondence shall be optional.

6.3    Under item 6.2.3, if the matter is referred to Council committee, the Council Liaison will notify the correspondent of the committee meeting date and time. Following final action by Council, the City Clerk will mail the correspondent notice of the final Council action.

6.4    The City Clerk shall regularly follow up on outstanding referrals to the Administration.

6.5    Any Council request or referrals to the Administration occurring at Council meetings shall be referred to staff by the City Clerk.

6.6    If a public disclosure request is received for Council correspondence, the Councilmembers shall be immediately notified and provided a copy of the request.


7.1    All items for inclusion of the agenda shall be delivered to the City Clerk Division no later than 8:30 a.m. on the Thursday preceding the regular Council meeting.

7.1.1    Correspondence reasonably related to a subject that will be on the next Council agenda shall be transmitted to the Council regardless of the date received.

7.1.2    A member of the public, the Council, or the Mayor may ask that an item be considered by the City Council even if it is not identified on the formal agenda by raising the issue during the appropriate time in the order of business of any meeting. (i.e., Audience Comment, New Business, Administrative Report.)

7.2    Unless otherwise instructed by the Council President, the City Clerk shall prepare the agenda.

7.3    The agenda shall be available to the members of the City Council and the public by 5:00 p.m. on the Thursday preceding the Monday Council meeting.

7.3.1    In case of special meetings, the agenda will be made available at least 24 hours prior to the meeting. Notice will be provided as required by law.