Supervisors limit public comment despite citizen backlash

New Hampton, Iowa – The Chickasaw County Supervisors have approved a new public comment policy Monday limiting citizens to two minutes and require previous approval to be on the agenda.

Supervisor Jason Byrne voted against the resolution Monday morning, proposing an alternative at an earlier meeting leaving public comment open at any time.

He says citizens have the right to talk about what they want, whenever they want.

 

The resolution passed 3-2.

Chairman Jacob Hackman, voted for the resolution, says he doesn’t approve of the public’s conduct during meetings.

 

He says the supervisors have been elected to be the public’s voice, adding if there is a concern to talk to their representative and if that doesn’t work, get on the agenda.

Citizen Rick Holthaus was removed from a previous meeting for comments.  He tells North Iowa News the new policy is a violation of his first amendment rights.

 

The policy comes after many different suggestions, including one that would’ve limited public comment to three minutes per agenda item.

If the public would like to comment on items, they must be on the agenda prior to the meeting.