Pinellas will consider change in public comments
The Pinellas County School Board will consider Tuesday whether to have the public wait until after a meeting has ended to make general comments. Right now, the public can make comments about items not on the agenda before the meeting has started.
The School Board already approved the change on first read.
The change could result in members of the public waiting several hours to be heard. Comments to items on the agenda, however, still would be heard during the regular meeting. Work sessions don't allow for any public comment at all. If approved, the meetings also would start a half hour earlier - 10 a.m. for day meetings and 5 p.m. for night meetings.
Board members, who have been supportive of the change, said it would simply revert back to past practice in which general comments were taken after the end of the regular meeting. Typically there are only a few speakers before any meeting and often they are the same speakers week after week.
For some speakers, the change could make it easier to make comments at an evening meeting as there would be a greater length of time in which to get to the district headquarters in Largo. For others, it could be an inconvenience as there wouldn't be a specific time set for public comments.