The Naperville city council took action to help those presenting, during public forum, by using a time clock indicating when the speaker’s 3-minute time limit has expired. It was no longer a person pulling the plug on a speaker, it was a time clock. It seems to have worked because speakers no longer became upset when a person said “the speaker’s time is up”, it was the clock and who is going to get upset with a clock. The clock keeps the meeting moving efficiently. Well done, great idea, but it didn’t go far enough. It deals with public forum speakers, but not with long-winded council members.
The Chicago (area) is known as the windy city, not because of wind in terms of miles-per-hour, but because of long-winded politicians. It’s true, google it. In an effort to keep Naperville council meetings moving along efficiently, saving time, and keeping the viewer’s interest, Watchdog proposes to utilize a ‘time clock’ on council members.
It could work something like this: a council member would have two minutes to make his/her point. If the council member can’t make their point within two minutes, they probably don’t have a point to make, and the room goes dark. They are allowed one additional comment for one minute on the same topic, then an air horn is utilized.
If they continue to talk, one of Naperville’s finest is called upon to escort the council member out of council chambers until the next agenda item is presented.
Now there will be those who say, “that can’t be done, it’s never been done, or it’s not fair” to which Watchdog replies major league baseball never had a pitch clock either, and now it does.