Regular Assembly Meetings
The Anchorage Assembly meets in regular session at least twice a month. However, the Mayor, the Chair of the Assembly, or five Assemblymembers may call special meetings. All Assembly meetings are open to the public. By ordinance, the Assembly must conduct the Municipality's business in public; however, either the Assembly or the Mayor may call an "executive session" to address certain issues confidentially. Issues which warrant an executive session are pending litigation, personnel matters which tend to defame or injure the reputation of persons, or issues that, if immediately disclosed, would tend to adversely affect Municipal finances. (AMC 2.30.030K) The Assembly may take no official action in an executive session.
Regular Assembly Meetings are held in the Assembly Chambers at the Loussac Public Library. Meetings are typically scheduled on Tuesday evenings and begin at 5 p.m. Click here to access the 2014 Assembly Meeting Calendar.
Regular Assembly meetings have a formal agenda. Click here to locate the Assembly Agenda Online. Copies of the agenda and addendum may also be obtained in advance at the Municipal Clerk's Office on the Friday afternoon before the Tuesday meeting. On the evening of the meeting, copies of the current agenda may be found near the doors to the Assembly Chambers.
Appearing Before The Assembly
The agenda of an Assembly meeting offers citizens three opportunities for comment; through a scheduled public hearing, an appearance request, or audience participation. In each case, the Assembly allows individuals to speak for three minutes.
If you plan on testifying at a public hearing, it is helpful to be seated in the front of the auditorium near the public podium. When the Chair opens the public hearing on a particular item on the agenda, approach the podium to speak. When speaking to the Assembly, first introduce yourself and spell your last name for the record. Support your testimony with as many facts as possible. The Assembly members may ask questions after your testimony. Answer the questions to the best of your ability and don't be afraid to say "I don't know."
In order to be listed on the agenda under Appearance Requests, the requestor must complete and file an Appearance Request Form with the Municipal Clerk's Office. Your request will need to be submitted 1-2 weeks before the meeting at which you wish to appear. Appearances will be scheduled no later than 14 days after acceptance.
Appearance requests must be signed and specify the topic you wish to address. A statement reading "I wish to address the Assembly on this date on the following topic" is sufficient. Completed forms must be sent to the Municipal Clerk, PO Box 196650, Anchorage, AK 99519-6650; or if you would like to fax your request, the Municipal Clerk's Office FAX number is 343-4313. Please keep in mind that the Municipal Clerk may not accept requests which include items that have other specific administrative channels of resolution not under the responsibility or authority of the Assembly or Municipal Administration. Items that are scheduled for public hearing; involved in current labor negotiations; or related to your involvement with pending litigation will not be accepted. (AMC 2.30.040C)
It is possible to talk with the Assembly without being on the agenda. "Audience Participation" is scheduled at the end of the Assembly's regular Tuesday evening agenda. No prior sign-up is required.
Actions Of The Assembly
The following is a summary of documents that the Assembly takes action on:
- ASSEMBLY ORDINANCE (AO) - Changes Municipal law, appropriates funds for annual operating and capital budgets, and sets the mill levy.
- ASSEMBLY RESOLUTION (AR) - Appropriates and revises funding, and formalizes an expression of policy or recognition.
- ASSEMBLY MEMORANDUM (AM) - Approves recommendations (i.e. bid awards) and summarizes the intent of ordinances and resolutions.
- ASSEMBLY INFORMATIONAL MEMORANDUM (AIM) - Provides the Assembly with requested information and reports.
Visit the Municipal Clerk's Office for copies of Assembly legislation.
All business of the Assembly is conducted through parliamentary procedures. A motion is made by an Assemblymember and seconded by another member. Once a motion has been seconded, it may be discussed and then approved or disapproved. In order for a motion to pass, at least six of the possible eleven votes must be in favor. A motion may be postponed for a definite period or tabled for an indefinite period. In order to override the Mayor's veto of an Assembly action, eight votes are needed .
The first motion to adopt an ordinance, memorandum, or resolution is called the main motion. Additional motions to change or amend the main motion are considered separately. Passage of any ordinance, memorandum, or resolution may require several votes of the Assembly, as amendments which attempt to change the original document are passed or defeated.