Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Town Hall meeting format goes unchanged

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The City Council on Monday decided to keep its town hall meetings informal after city staff presented four options that would set a standard format.

Council members said they liked being able to answer residents’ questions, discuss various topics or even take walking tours if that’s what the community wants without sticking to specific format.

Councilwoman Anne M. Robbins said a formalized meetings ‘‘kills the spontaneity.”

‘‘The meetings don’t lend themselves to structure,” Robbins said.

City Manager Scott Ullery told council members that he feels the informal meetings are an ‘‘excellent” format, but that he thought council members did not think they worked well, so he instructed staff to develop some options.

Councilman holdstown hall meeting

Councilman Piotr Gajewski will hold an individual town hall meeting on Thursday to hear ideas and concerns from residents on city issues.

Gajewski said he expects some topics may include the revisions to the city’s zoning ordinance, the switch to an in-house attorney and budgetary issues, among many others.

He said he will spend some time giving an update on what the council has done in the three months since his first town hall meeting and then open the floor for questions.

This will be the Gajewski’s second in his series of quarterly town hall meetings.

‘‘I’m a firm believer in individual council members taking input from citizens and I don’t think we do it enough,” Gajewski said.

The meeting will be held at 8 p.m. in the Black Eyed Susan Conference Room in Rockville City Hall, 111 Maryland Ave.

Appointments madeto new task force

Mayor Susan R. Hoffmann appointed 10 Rockville residents and business owners to the newly formed Asian Pacific American Heritage Task Force Monday night.

Hoffmann previously stated that she hopes the task force would ‘‘foster better communication between Rockville’s city government and its Asian-American residents.”

The task force will be charged with participating in events and celebrations, such as Asian Pacific American Heritage Month in May, the Chinese New Year commemoration, the Asian-American business conference and a possible Sister City partnership with a city in China.

Those appointed to the task force include Hui-Ling Elaine Chang, Margaret Chao, Teresa Harn, George Jiang, John Lin, Paula Lin, Art Stigile, Lisa Long, Mark Su and Eric Wang.