City supervisors might adopt public meeting conduct rules
Appeal Staff Writer
Carson City might adopt rules of conduct for people attending public meetings.
The proposal would allow the mayor or whomever is conducting the meeting to restrict comments that are “irrelevant, repetitious, slanderous, offensive, inflammatory, redundant, irrational or amounting to personal attacks.”
It also says people who “willfully disrupt a meeting so that orderly conduct is made impractical, may be removed from the meeting.”
If they pass the rules on Thursday, they could affect a frequent visitor to the supervisors’ meetings.
Sam Dehné, a Reno man who has been attending supervisors meetings during the past couple of months, has filed a complaint with the Nevada Attorney General about the supervisors.
He says Carson’s elected officials should allow open comment each time they change to other functions, such as the Redevelopment Authority, then return to their activities as the supervisors.
He is running for the Washoe County Commission district 2 seat and is known for frequenting government meetings around the area and challenging how the meetings are run. The retired airline pilot sometimes sings his comments and plays a guitar as accompaniment.
“We want to welcome public input and not to be restrictive, but give the mayor the ability to ensure orderly conduct,” said Linda Ritter, city manager.
Dehné filed two additional complaints after his initial argument about the open-comment periods. He said he wasn’t allowed to speak during subsequent meetings.
City officials disagree with his assertions, and say they are within the law.
The matter still is being investigated, according to Nicole Moon, public information officer for the attorney general’s office.
“Freedom of speech was made for watchdogs, not fanny kissers,” Dehné said. “King George thought Patrick Henry and Paul Revere were inflammatory.”
• Contact reporter Terri Harber at tharber @nevadaappeal.com or 882-2111, ext. 215.
If you go
What: Carson City Board of Supervisors meeting
When: 8:30 a.m. Thursday
Where: Sierra Room, Community Center, 851 E. William St.