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Virginia Department of Historic Resources

Public Participation at Board of Historic Resources Meetings

The Virginia Board of Historic Resources (“Board”) is an instrumentality of the Commonwealth of Virginia, created by Act of the Virginia General Assembly in 1966. Board of Historic Resources meetings are public meetings. The Board desires to hear the viewpoints of interested citizens, but also needs to conduct its business in an orderly and efficient manner. Therefore, it will schedule time for public participation during its regular meetings.

Public comments on adopted agenda items will be heard at various points during the meeting as indicated on the agenda. However, most Board meetings will also include an opportunity for public comment on items not formally part of the promulgated or adopted agenda. This portion of the Board meeting is intended as an opportunity to identify matters of interest and concern and the role of the Board is to listen and potentially provide direction to staff for follow – up, and not to formally respond to speakers or take formal action on matters presented. If matters broached during the public comment portion of the agenda seem to warrant formal Board attention and discussion, then those matters may be styled as formal agenda items for subsequent Board meetings.

A sign-up sheet listing name, address, and topic will be placed at the entrance to the meeting room. Persons who wish to address the Board are required to fill out this information and sign-up before the meeting begins. Priority will be given to those who have signed-up at the beginning of the meeting and indicated they are speaking to a specific agenda item under consideration by the Board. Citizens requesting a special accommodation due to a communication disability should notify a Department of Historic Resources staff member prior to the scheduled meeting start time.

In consideration of the time constraints associated with formal Board agenda items, speakers during the public comment period are requested to limit their presentation to a maximum of 3 minutes with no more than 30 total minutes allocated for citizen’s comments. The 3-minute time limit may be reduced if a large number of citizens wish to speak. With the consensus of the Board, the chair may extend this time limit if the chair/Board believes it is necessary for clarification of the issue being presented.

Prior to recognizing speakers, the board chair will read a statement providing the protocols for the public comment period. Upon recognition by the chair, speakers will clearly state their names and commence their remarks. Speakers will address their comments directly to the Board. The chair has discretionary authority to rule a speaker out of order.

The board chair will be responsible for recognizing all speakers, for maintaining proper order, and for adhering to any time limits. The chair is authorized to stop and/or have removed, any speaker who uses language that is obscene, vulgar, or profane; constitutes fighting words, true threats, or solicitation to commit crimes; and incites imminent lawless action. Moreover, the chair may stop and/or have removed any person who disrupts the orderly functioning of the meeting by making loud, boisterous, threatening, redundant or otherwise inappropriate comments. The Board also requests speakers refrain from making references to specific individuals.

Updated April 16, 2019