Coronavirus Local Fiscal Recovery Funds
Fulton County Board of Commissioners (BOC) feels that public input on the use of these federal dollars is key to ensuring that funding is used to meet the needs that our citizens identify as important, and the County encourages public comments at all times.
At each of our BOC meeting, since the beginning of this pandemic, the executive staff has provided a public briefing on how COVID has affected our community; and has identified how the County has proposed to utilize any local, state, and federal dollars to respond to identified needs of the of the community. These use cases were presented that identified the use of funds, timeframes, high level key performance indicators, status updates, and lead contact person.
During many of these meetings the BOC has received hundreds of public comments on the use of these federal dollars, which was instigated by proposed resolutions that were made part of the public agenda.
The public was given a chance to attend the meetings in person, along with the options to attend virtually and/or submit public comments in writing as part of the public comment section of the agenda. The comments on the use of SLFRF funds are part of the records that are available in the minutes of the BOC and video tapings for each meeting.
The County tries to make all reasonable accommodations to assist citizens, such as alternative formats, sign language, interpretations, closed captioning/subtitling, review of accommodation requests outside of our ADA plan.
Fulton County is also always looking at the data behind the services and programs that we operated or funded to ensure the services are made available to all eligible residents to the best of our ability. If there are areas that are identified as underserved, the management team makes adjustments accordingly. These changes are then included as the public presentations that are made during the public meetings.
Fulton County Public Comment Policy:
During the Public Comment portion of a Board Meeting, citizens may voice County-related requests, concerns, opinions, etc. At the Regular Meeting, speakers will be heard prior to the zoning portion of the agenda; if applicable, at the Recess Meeting, prior to the County Manager’s Unfinished Business. Before speaking, each speaker presenting in person must fill out a speaker card, located at the Assembly Hall entrance and podium. All speaker cards must be submitted to the Clerk’s staff prior to the commencement of public comment, who will accept them on a first-come, first-served basis. The meeting will be aired live on all official Fulton County Government media platforms designated by the Fulton County Department of External Affairs. Speakers wishing to submit public comment to the Board in writing can do so by submitting their comments in all two forms deemed allowable by the Fulton County Department of External Affairs. To be read into the record, written comments must be received by 5PM on the Tuesday, immediately prior to the meeting in the form outlined. All virtual public five comments and requests to speak in person must be submitted before the Clerk sounds at the start of the meeting.
i. Speakers who cannot be present at Assembly Hall may speak live or via videoconference (ex. Zoom). Speakers can also speak live from other County facilities made available, such as the North Fulton Service Center 10 or the South Fulton Service Center.
ii. Comments via e-mail shall be provided electronically to the BOC and their staff before the meeting begins, and all comments shall be included as part of the Minutes of the Board of Commissioners meeting.
iii. Comments via e-mail that are the same in nature or pertain to the same BOC Agenda Item number shall be categorized by County staff ahead of the meeting. To expedite time, for e-mailed public comments that are the same in nature or pertain to the same BOC Agenda Item number or subject matter/topic, the Clerk or other assigned staff shall read the Agenda Item number and/or topic, and then read the list of public commenters’ names and locations (if given) that are in support of the Item; then read the list of public commenters’ names and locations (if given) who oppose the Agenda item or topic. This rule shall apply to all forms of pre-written/pre-recorded public comments.
iv. Public Comment will occur prior to the business portion of the BOC meeting and will be strictly limited to 30 minutes. In-person comments will three be made first, followed by written/e-mailed comments. Regardless of the form of the public comment (spoken/written), the time limit will be two (2) 5 minutes, and no time shall be yielded to other speakers.
v. In the event the 30-minute time limit is reached prior to public comments seven being completed, public comment will be suspended, and the business eight portion of the BOC meeting will commence. Public comment will resume at nine at the end of the meeting. Similarly, written comments (that were timely ten submitted) not previously read may be read at the end of the meeting. 11
vi. Speaker cards will provide three (3) options for those individuals who want to speak that were not able to comment during the initial 30 minutes public comment time limit:
a. Speak at the end of the meeting;
b. Be placed at the front of the line for public comment at the next 16 meetings; or
c. Provide written comments that will be read at the end of the BOC meeting.
vii. In the event that none of these three options are selected, the individual will forfeit their right to public comment for that day.