Chapter 3.31


3.31.010    Purpose.

3.31.020    Application.

3.31.030    Residency requirements.

3.31.040    Appointment.

3.31.050    Term length.

3.31.060    Selection of council contact.

3.31.070    Selection of chair and co-chair.

3.31.080    Assignment of staff liaison.

3.31.090    Conflict of interest.

3.31.100    Member removal.

3.31.110    Open meetings.

3.31.120    Rules and regulations.

3.31.130    Work plan.

3.31.140    Annual report to the council.

3.31.150    Review and reauthorization.

3.31.160    Severability.

*    Code reviser’s note: Ord. 1205 adds these provisions as Chapter 3.30. The chapter has been renumbered to avoid duplication of numbering.

3.31.010 Purpose.

The purpose of this chapter is to establish uniform policies for city boards, commissions and committees and a process for review to ensure that the structure is efficient and accessible to citizens.

All boards, commissions and committees are created by the city council (council), as the legislative body, and are not independent nor autonomous from the council.

A. All boards and commissions of the city of Soap Lake shall be created by an ordinance of the council and shall contain a statement of purpose, specific membership composition requirements, exceptions to the residency requirements and meeting frequency. Special purpose (short term) or ad hoc committees may not necessitate an ordinance and may be established by a majority council approval of the scope for the committee and the term of its appointment. Special purpose and ad hoc committees and task forces are created from time to time by the city council to address issues of interest or to conduct background work on technical or politically sensitive issues. Special purpose or ad hoc committees will be dissolved upon completion of the intended task.

B. The responsibilities of citizen boards and commissions in the city of Soap Lake shall be in two areas:

1. Advice. These boards, commissions and committees shall advise the council and the mayor on items related to their purpose and on such specific items as requested by the council or mayor.

2. Delegated Action. These boards, commissions and committees may be authorized by city ordinance, and in some cases also pursuant to state statute, to conduct specific city business and/or may undertake specific actions as delegated to them by the council or the mayor in their respective roles. (Ord. 1205 § 1, 2015).

3.31.020 Application.

This chapter shall apply to all citizen boards, commissions and committees created and/or regulated by the city. The council may, by ordinance, exempt specific standing boards and commissions from provisions of this chapter. (Ord. 1205 § 1, 2015).

3.31.030 Residency requirements.

The majority of all boards and commission members must live within the city limits. If a board or commission member moves out of the area and impacts the majority balance, that member is no longer eligible to serve. Exceptions to these requirements must be included in the board or commission ordinance passed by the council. (Ord. 1205 § 1, 2015).

3.31.040 Appointment.

The members of all boards and commissions will be appointed by the mayor and approved by the council. The mayor will provide and publicize an open application process for vacant positions. Members shall be selected without respect to political affiliation and shall serve without compensation. The mayor may appoint a maximum of three council members to serve on an advisory board or commission. (Ord. 1205 § 1, 2015).

3.31.050 Term length.

The term length for all board and commission members shall be three years. The mayor will determine the terms of the initial appointments to ensure staggered terms so that no more than one-third of the members’ terms expire each year. If a position becomes vacant mid-term, an appointment will be made to fill the rest of the term. Members in good standing may be reappointed at the discretion of the mayor and with the approval of the council. (Ord. 1205 § 1, 2015).

3.31.060 Selection of council contact.

The council will approve a council member contact for each board and commission at the first council meeting each January. A council member appointed to an advisory board or commission will also serve as the council contact. The council contact will serve as a communication link between the board or commission and the council. (Ord. 1205 § 1, 2015).

3.31.070 Selection of chair and co-chair.

The mayor will appoint a chair and co-chair for each board and commission from the members, after consultation with the members of the board or commission and the council. (Ord. 1205 § 1, 2015).

3.31.080 Assignment of staff liaison.

If necessary, the mayor may assign a staff person to each board, commission, and committee to provide technical expertise and staff support. (Ord. 1205 § 1, 2015).

3.31.090 Conflict of interest.

If any member has a conflict of interest or an appearance of fairness issue with a matter before the board or commission, the member shall not participate in the deliberations and the decision-making process with respect to the matter. (Ord. 1205 § 1, 2015).

3.31.100 Member removal.

Removal of a member shall be recommended by the mayor with approval of the council. (Ord. 1205 § 1, 2015).

3.31.110 Open meetings.

All meetings of boards and commissions are subject to the Open Public Meetings Act (Chapter 43.30 RCW) where a majority (a quorum) meets and discusses city business. For all regular board and commission meetings, the agenda, including date, time and location, will be made available to the public by 4:30 p.m. Friday, the week before the meeting. (Ord. 1205 § 1, 2015).

3.31.120 Rules and regulations.

The city shall establish general rules and regulations for the conduct of these boards and commissions, including the requirement that all meetings have minutes taken, a majority of the members shall constitute a quorum for the transaction of business, and a majority of those present shall be necessary to carry any motion. In addition, each board and commission may adopt such additional rules and regulations as are necessary for the conduct of its business, subject to the approval by the council. (Ord. 1205 § 1, 2015).

3.31.130 Work plan.

Each board and commission shall develop a written work plan based on the council’s annual plan, policy development assignments and priorities identified by the board or commission and approved by the council. The plan shall be submitted for approval on or before the council’s last meeting in December each year. The work plan shall outline the key goals and timeline, the meeting schedule and member terms expiring for the coming year. (Ord. 1205 § 1, 2015).

3.31.140 Annual report to the council.

Each board and commission shall submit a written report on or before the council’s first meeting in March each year. The report shall summarize the activities and accomplishments for the previous calendar year (January through December) and include any general recommendations and reports as appropriate. (Ord. 1205 § 1, 2015).

3.31.150 Review and reauthorization.

Every even numbered year, unless prohibited by state statute, the council shall discuss and reauthorize boards and commissions of the city, as it deems appropriate.

A. Reauthorization to boards and commissions shall be by ordinance and shall state the current purpose and need for the board or commission and may include termination of or revision in the purpose and duties and/or other changes from the original ordinance.

B. The council may determine that a board or commission is no longer needed and may choose to not reauthorize the board or commission. An ordinance repealing the original authorizing ordinance shall be placed on the council agenda for formal action.

C. For the purpose of implementing this chapter, the review schedule should be every two years beginning in 2014 and then on each successive even numbered year. (Ord. 1205 § 1, 2015).

3.31.160 Severability.

The invalidity of any part of this chapter shall not affect the validity of any other part of this chapter which can be given effect without such involved part or parts. (Ord. 1205 § 1, 2015).