Persons wishing to speak at any advertised public hearing may sign up to testify by calling (240) 777-7803. Organization representatives and individuals receive three minutes. The Council also encourages written testimony and accepts petitions.
Speakers will not be allowed to cede time to other speakers.
Those wishing to submit written testimony for the record are asked to provide 15 copies. Speakers should use their allotted time to summarize more extensive written testimony which is submitted for the record.
The Council usually hears from about 30 speakers at an evening public hearing. If there are more speakers than the Council can hear, staff tries to ensure that the Council hears from all points of view. While in-person participation is encouraged, the Council does not make its decisions by counting the number of speakers for and against an issue or the number of people in the hearing room. Councilmembers carefully weigh the evidence that comes to them in person, in writing, and through their own research and the research done by staff. They often study the experience of other jurisdictions and consult with members of the community about the potential impact of a law.
The Council President will call speakers to come to the witness table in groups of five or six. Please remain seated until all the members of your panel have spoken. Councilmembers reserve their questions until all the members of the panel have given their testimony.