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Planning commission: Plan to attend meetings

4/25/2013

By RANDY GONZALES

By RANDY GONZALES

rgonzales@dailynews.net

After failing to reach a quorum at last month's meeting, the Ellis County Joint Planning Commission adopted an attendance clause in the committee's bylaws at Wednesday night's regular meeting at 601 Main.

For a quorum, the 10-member board needs six members present. There were five members present for the March meeting, and after a 45-minute wait, the meeting was canceled.

In the last 15 months in which attendance numbers are available on the county's website, of the eight times the board has met, four times six members were present and the other four times seven members were present. At Wednesday's meeting, nine members were present.

"I think it was necessary," Chairman Kendall Krug said of adding to the bylaws. "In the four years I've been on the commission, that was the first meeting I've ever seen that we didn't have a quorum. There's been meetings we've been fighting to get one more person there.

"I think as chairman this year, it has been a little bit frustrating. And for the commissioners, it would be really frustrating because they're the people that made the appointments."

After a 10-minute executive session to discuss the bylaws, the board approved 9-0 a motion to add attendance requirements into the bylaws. Previously, there was no mention of attendance requirements.

Now, after three unexcused absences of regular meetings in a calendar year by a member, a notice of non-attendance will be sent to the Ellis County Commission.

The commissioners, who each have three appointments to the board, at that time would decide what to do.

Also in the motion, absences due to an emergency can be waived by the commission. Any member who will be unable to attend a meeting shall provide at least three days' notice to the zoning administrator's office.

Krug said someone said to him if a person volunteers for a board, they should show up.

"But I can argue the other way that calving season, we had some emergencies come up," Krug said. "That's why we put that provision in there."

In other business, the board voted 9-0 not to approve any of the recommendations made by RDG Planning and Design for the comprehensive plan.