Due to COVID-19 Jefferson County Department of Health officer orders, the City of Vestavia Hills has moved forward with internet interfacing and teleconferencing of meetings and public hearing. For participation instructions (links, phone numbers, etc.) visit individual board pages. This model is intended for City Council meetings, as well as other City boards/commissions:
- Prior to the meeting, the Zoom videoconference option (as scheduled by the City Planner) along with a phone number for a teleconference option shall be published with an access code so that anyone participating can remotely join and comment during the meeting. This information is relayed through public notice which also references a web page designated off of the “Alert Center” section of the website and further mentioned in a “callout” on the agenda. Those Council or Board members who are unable to physically attend the meeting are encouraged to utilize the Zoom videoconferencing option.
- Department Heads, applicants and anyone not critical to the running of the meeting should be encouraged to utilize video or audio conferencing rather than attend physically.
- The Commission Chair and City Planner should be physically present in order to preside over the meeting. If any other Member wish to attend, three (counting the Chair) can be physically located on the dais. Any other Members attending along with the City Engineer (should he attend) can be situated within the available seating in the Chamber. The Chair will open by giving the parameters of the meeting including the procedure in which each case will be heard, the requirement of any speaker to self-identify and await recognition from the Chair before making statements.
- If relying upon §36-25A-5.1, a quorum of the Board should be physically present (as defined shall be a majority of the Board). If more votes are required to approve/deny any item, the other needed votes may be done via audio/video on a roll call vote.
- All participants physically present, including the Council, staff, audience, etc., shall be seated a minimum distance so as to maintain “social distancing.” Any audience members that cannot be physically separated within the social distancing confines, will be encouraged to go to their vehicle and participate by means of telephone. An individual will be stationed at the entrance to the Chamber in order to seat and ensure attendees adhere to “social distancing” requirements and to distribute teleconferencing information as needed.
- It will be incumbent upon the Chair to carefully maneuver the meeting to ensure that every speaker is heard and identified. This might require additional time than a normal meeting so everyone must be patient for the meeting to remain in order.
- All participants shall be repeatedly reminded to adhere to the following: (1) Do NOT put the phone on hold, as music and other sounds will distract from the meeting; (2) participants should be aware and try to minimize any background noise on their end, i.e. dogs, kids, conversations, etc.; and (3) no participant should be driving, if in a vehicle the vehicle should be stationary, also to avoid background noises.
- In coordination with the Chair presiding, the City Planner shall direct the Zoom meeting and mute individuals as needed or encourage participants to self-mute until needed to speak. He is also responsible for any information that needs to be placed on the screen for viewing.
- The Planner’s office will take all actions necessary to contact applicants to ensure that all are familiar with presentation of their cases. These have already been scheduled; any upcoming cases will be delayed as much as possible.
- Internal testing has proven that the Council Chambers appears to be acoustically feasible for hearing comments from all Commission members, phone callers and speakers at the podium.
- The video equipment may also be used that will be archived to show and hear the speakers, public hearings, etc.
- Meetings will proceed as normal with a motion and a second with each speaker identified. The Chair or City Planner will make the presentation of each item. Any supporting information will be obtained by the applicant, etc., via telephone. Board members will have information on screen in the Chambers, other board members will be asked to have the information in front of them via personal PC, laptop, iPad, etc. Since the agendas are posted with all supporting documentation ahead of time, the public also has the opportunity to view the information and comment.
- If possible, the Commission meeting will be videotaped as usual.
- At the end of the meeting, the agenda will be utilized as an expedited meeting synopsis along with supplementary notes as to the actions taken by the Council or Board, members participating, and time of adjournment. It will be posted to the website within 12 hours of the conclusion of the meeting pursuant to Alabama law.
- These guidelines are subject to change with meeting experience.
END SPECIAL NOTICE
Recent Planning and Zoning agenda packets are posted below. For earlier meetings, please contact the City Planner at 205.978.0131. Each agenda packet contains the minutes of the prior meeting. See the Planning and Zoning page for more information.
2020 Planning and Zoning Agenda Packets