Town of Glocester, RI
Providence County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[HISTORY: Adopted by the Town Council of the Town of Glocester 9-14-1989 (Ch. III, § 2, 3-02-07, of the 1991 Code). Amendments noted where applicable.]
GENERAL REFERENCES
Boards, commissions and committees — See Part 2 of this Code.

§ 392-1 Purpose.

The Town of Glocester adopts these rules of procedure to:
A. 
Establish procedures for the execution of the responsibilities of various Town boards, commissions and committees, hereinafter referred to as "boards," as established and delegated by the Glocester Town Council;
B. 
Facilitate processing and review of applicable permits, licenses, applications, certifications and other documents as may be required by the various Town boards;
C. 
Promote a better understanding of decisions and opinions issued by the various Town boards;
D. 
Provide a mechanism for reviewing permits, licenses, applications, certificates and other documents with respect to maintaining the objectives of the current Comprehensive Community Plan, as updated and amended, and other goals and objectives ordained by the Town Council.

§ 392-2 Office and member duties.

A. 
Members of all various Town boards shall be appointed as provided for in the Town ordinance.
B. 
The Chairperson of the Town board shall:
(1) 
Preside at all meetings, hearings and workshops of the body of which she/he is Chairperson, ensuring that all meetings are held in an orderly, efficient fashion, and that all interested parties have the opportunity to be heard;
(2) 
Decide all points of order and questions of procedure, subject to these rules, unless a majority of the members in session directs otherwise;
(3) 
Appoint any subcommittees, from the membership of his or her own board, necessary to investigate any matter before the board;
(4) 
Be responsible for the development of a proposed budget for the board, submitted in accordance with procedures developed by the budget committee and approved by the Town Council;
(5) 
Be responsible for the preparation of an annual report of the activities of the board during the preceding calendar year, including, but not limited to, a record or catalogue of all decisions and opinions issued by the board regarding the granting or denial of all applications made, proposed and adopted rules of procedure and standards of review, the effect of the year's activities in the Town, the attendance of members, any training sessions attended by any of the membership, financial statements, and any other pertinent data. This report shall be distributed to the Town Council for its review no later than March 1, and shall be placed on file in the Town Clerk's office for public viewing within a reasonable time period thereafter;
(6) 
In the event of the absence of the Recording Clerk, arrange for a substitute to perform duties under Subsection E; and
(7) 
Conduct all meetings, hearings and workshops in accordance with Rhode Island Open Meetings Laws.
(8) 
No Chairman of a board that accepts applications for consideration, per state law or the Glocester Code of Ordinances, shall serve as Chairman of any other Town board or commission.
[Added 5-19-2011, effective 6-22-2011]
C. 
Vice-Chairperson. The Vice-Chairperson shall serve as the Chairperson of the Town board in the absence of the Chairperson. At such times, the Vice-Chairperson shall have the same powers and duties as the Chairperson.
D. 
Secretary (optional). Duties as determined by the board.
E. 
Recording Clerk (appointed by the Town Council). The Recording Clerk shall:
(1) 
Prepare, under the direction of the Chairperson, the recording of written opinions, approvals, disapprovals, findings and conditions for each application, preapplications or consultations;
(2) 
Ensure that the appropriate Town board(s) and/or staff are notified in a timely manner of all opinions, approvals, disapprovals, findings and conditions for applications, preapplications and consultations;
(3) 
Ensure that applicants receive written notification in advance of meeting dates and of written opinions, approvals, disapprovals, findings and conditions for applications, preapplications and consultations;
(4) 
Prepare meeting agendas in consultation with the Chairperson and appropriate staff, and ensure that the public notice of each meeting is properly advertised and posted in accordance with RI Open Meetings Laws;
(5) 
Prepare and maintain records of meetings, hearings, workshops and reviews; and
(6) 
Ensure, as far as reasonably possible, that records are readily available for public viewing, in accordance with RI Open Meetings Laws.
F. 
Conflict of interest. No member shall take part in any process, hearing, opinion or decision of any application, preapplication or consultation in which the member has or appears to have a personal, professional or financial interest. In a situation where a conflict of interest arises, it shall be the responsibility of that member having the conflict of interest to disclose such conflict for the record. That member shall withdraw from proceedings during any and all discussion of the item presenting the conflict.
G. 
Attendance at meetings. If any member fails to attend three consecutive duly scheduled meetings of the board, or is absent from one-half or more of such meetings in a calendar year, the Chairperson shall:
(1) 
Request that the Town Council declare the position vacant; and
(2) 
Request that the Town Council act to fill the position at the next Town Council meeting.

§ 392-3 Meetings.

A. 
Notification and cancellation.
(1) 
All various Town boards shall establish a schedule of regular meetings for the entire calendar year following the month in which annual election of officers occurs. Annually, each board shall post the schedule of regular meetings in Town Hall, in accordance with RI Open Meetings Laws. The agenda of each meeting of the board shall be posted in the Town Hall at least 48 hours prior to such meeting. The agenda shall contain, for each item, the owner's and applicant's names, AP and lot number(s), citation of the ordinance and a brief description of what the board is being asked to act upon or discuss. When the board has no matters pending, the Chairperson may cancel a regularly scheduled meeting by notifying all members not less than 48 hours prior to the time set for the meeting and shall post a notice of cancellation in the Town Hall at least 48 hours in advance of the time of the meeting.
(2) 
The Chairperson may call a special meeting of the board at any time, provided that a regular quorum of the members so consent, not more than two weeks, nor less than one week prior to the time of such meeting. Special meetings of the board shall be posted in the same manner as regularly scheduled meetings of the board.
(3) 
Agendas shall be mailed to applicants appearing on such agendas at least seven days prior to the time of such meeting. The Recording Clerk shall mail the agendas as a courtesy and to ensure that applicants are notified in writing of such meetings at which their attendance (or that of their representative) is required. The agenda shall indicate that the order of business may be altered by a majority vote of the board.
B. 
Voting. For the purposes of decision-making, each member of the board shall have one vote. A board member may (and must) abstain from a vote in the case of a conflict of interest.
C. 
Quorum. An affirmative vote of a simple majority of the board members shall be required to make any decision or formally conduct any business, except where otherwise specified by law. In the event that there are not sufficient members present to make decisions at a meeting, any member present shall announce such to the public audience and so inform the audience that a special meeting will be called to hear the items on the agenda. No new items will be added to the agenda for the special meeting. Such meetings will be advertised and conducted in accordance with the provisions of Subsection A of this section.
D. 
Order of business. The board shall hold all meetings open to the general public. Regular and special meetings of the board shall utilize the following order of business as appropriate:
(1) 
Call to order by the Chairperson;
(2) 
Roll call, or some means of introduction of members in attendance;
(3) 
Reading, by request of any member, and amendment, if necessary, and acceptance of the minutes of the previous meeting(s);
(4) 
Committee or relevant reports (other than project review);
(5) 
Old business, including continued applications;
(6) 
New business, including new formal applications and petitions;
(7) 
Informal or preapplication consultations;
(8) 
Open forum;
(9) 
Adjournment;
E. 
Records.
(1) 
The board shall keep written records of its meetings, deliberations and decisions. The Recording Clerk of the body shall have the primary responsibility for keeping the records. The board may also require a verbatim, recorded or stenographic record.
(2) 
The board shall maintain written minutes available for public inspection in Town Hall, in accordance with RI Open Meetings Laws. Minutes shall show the vote of each member on each question, and shall indicate, as well, abstentions and absences. At a minimum, minutes shall also contain:
(a) 
Listing of members present and absent;
(b) 
Listing of others present, specifically, staff, Town Solicitor, public agency staff, applicants and/or their representatives;
(c) 
Reading and approval of minutes of the previous meeting(s);
(d) 
Summary of the agenda items, including a general description of relevant features/considerations;
(e) 
Summary of arguments and materials presented for each item, including supporting documents, objections and corrections;
(f) 
Summary of deliberations for each application, including a detailed reference to the standards or review criteria used;
(g) 
Findings of fact made, conclusions reached, and actions taken or motions made on each application or item of consideration.
(3) 
The board shall forward a written summary of its deliberations, opinions, motions and actions to the applicant, the Building Official, Zoning Enforcement Officer, the Town Planner, and other applicable boards, and shall enter necessary information into the land evidence books, within 14 days following the meeting at which such deliberations were made, unless specifically required earlier to meet the requirements for meetings, hearings or workshops of other boards or the Town Council.
(4) 
Unofficial minutes shall be available within 35 days of that meeting or at the next regularly scheduled meeting, whichever is earlier, unless the board, by majority vote, extends the time period for the filing of minutes and publicly states the reasons, in accordance with the Rhode Island Open Meetings Laws.
F. 
Order of business for formal applications.
(1) 
The Town board's consideration of each formal application shall utilize the following order of business:
(a) 
Chairperson's preliminary statement concerning the application, as read from the application form. In this statement, the Chairperson shall describe any special features to be considered;
(b) 
Applicant's presentation of the project, arguments and material in support of the application. Applicant shall begin by stating his/her name and address, address of the land in question, and shall introduce any engineer, attorney or other representative present. This presentation shall be made to the board and public audience. Every effort shall be made to present the material in such a way that both the board and the public audience may hear, see and understand the verbal and graphic description of the proposed application and the impact of that application on the community;
(c) 
Staff reports and comments, as applicable;
(d) 
Comments from interested parties, abutters, etc.;
(e) 
Public or private groups' comments or recommendations concerning the application;
(f) 
Town board members' questions of the application, staff or review subcommittee (if applicable) concerning the application may be made throughout the process;
(2) 
The Chairperson's summary of the application, arguments and materials presented, including findings of fact, objections and corrections of any party;
(3) 
The board's deliberations over a motion to grant an application shall be based upon relevant goals and objectives of the Comprehensive Community Plan, Town ordinances and other standards of review, including, but not limited to, promoting the public health, safety, morals and general welfare of the Town of Glocester. Motions to grant an application shall include a specific reference to the standards of review under which the proposal has been judged, and may establish a reasonable time period for project completion.
G. 
Order of business, informal, for preapplication consultations or conceptual reviews. The board shall use the following order of business when considering information or preapplication consultations or conceptual reviews:
(1) 
The same order of business as in reviewing formal applications, with the exception that no motions are made on informal applications;
(2) 
The applicant shall be given a clear understanding of the board's consideration of the appropriateness of the proposal, whether or not the proposal meets the board's standards of review that will be employed and any suggestions or modifications that the board feels appropriate.

§ 392-4 Applicability.

These rules shall apply to all Town boards, notwithstanding binding state legislation.