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Borough of Sewickley, PA
Allegheny County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[HISTORY: Adopted by the Borough Council of the Borough of Sewickley 11-17-1997 by Res. No. 97-15 (Ch. 1, Part 12, of the 1996 Code of Ordinances). Amendments noted where applicable.]
A. 
Council meeting; location.
(1) 
Rule 1. All meetings of the Borough of Sewickley Borough Council shall be held at the Municipal Building, 601 Thorn Street, Sewickley, Pennsylvania.
B. 
Council meeting; time.
(1) 
Rule 2A. The committee of the whole meeting of the Borough of Sewickley Borough Council shall be held on the Tuesday before the third Monday of each month at 7:00 p.m., except that Borough Council may change the date and time of such meetings, provided proper notice of all such changes shall be advertised as outlined by the Borough Code of the State of Pennsylvania.
(2) 
Rule 2B. The regular meetings of the Borough of Sewickley Borough Council shall be held at 7:30 p.m. on the third Monday of each month, except that Borough Council may change the date and time of such meetings, provided proper notice of all such changes shall be advertised as outlined by the Borough Code of the State of Pennsylvania.
C. 
Council meetings; open to the public.
(1) 
Rule 3. All meetings of the Borough of Sewickley Borough Council and of all committees thereof shall be open to the public, except as provided for in the State Sunshine Law, Act No. 1986-84 of July 1986.[1]
[1]
Editor's Note: The Sunshine Act of 1986 was repealed 10-15-1998 by P.L. 729, No. 93; see now the Sunshine Act, 65 Pa.C.S.A. § 701 et seq. [October 15, 1998, P.L. 729, No. 93].
D. 
Elections of officers.
(1) 
Rule 4. Procedures for electing officers are as follows:
(a) 
Biannually, as specified in the Borough Code, first Monday after holiday at the first meeting of the new Council, the members thereof shall choose a Chair from among their number who shall have the title of President. In addition to the powers conferred upon him/her as President, he/she shall continue to have all the rights, privileges and immunities of a member of the Council. If a vacancy occurs in the office of President, the members of the Council, at their next regular meeting, shall select a President from among their number for the unexpired term.
(b) 
Additionally, at this same meeting, the members shall choose, from their members, a person to serve as Vice President. This person shall take over the duties of the President in every case where the President is unable to act in his/her capacity for a period of time or until a new President is elected as described above.
(c) 
In conjunction with the above elections, a President Pro Tempore shall also be elected in a like manner.
(d) 
At this same biennial meeting the members shall appoint an individual to serve as Borough Manager, who may not be a member of Council.
(e) 
At this same biennial meeting the members shall also appoint an individual to serve as Secretary and the same or another individual to serve as Treasurer. These offices may not be occupied by Council members.
(f) 
The above elections and appointments shall be by majority of quorum and shall be in compliance with the Borough Code.
E. 
Presiding officer.
(1) 
Rule 5. The President shall preside at all meetings of the Council and be recognized as the chief executive officer of the Borough. In case of the President's absence or temporary disability, the Vice President shall act as President during the continuance of the absence. In case of the absence or temporary disability of the President and the Vice President, a President Pro Tempore, selected by members of the Council, shall act as President during the continuance of the absences or disabilities. The President, Vice President or President Pro Tempore is referred to as "presiding officer" from time to time in these rules of procedure.
F. 
Quorum.
(1) 
Rule 6. At all meetings of the Council, five Council members who are present and eligible to vote shall constitute a quorum for the transaction of business. A lesser number may adjourn from time to time, provided that written notice of said adjournment be posted on the exterior Council Chamber doors. Council meetings adjourned under the previous provision shall be considered a regular meeting for all purposes.
G. 
Attendance, excused absences.
(1) 
Rule 7. A Council member shall forfeit his/her office by failing to attend three consecutive regular meetings of the Council without being excused by the Council. Members of the Council may be excused by complying with this section. The member shall contact the presiding officer prior to the meeting and state the reason for his/her inability to attend the meeting. If the member is unable to contact the presiding officer, the member shall contact the Borough Manager or Borough Secretary, who shall convey the message to the presiding officer. Following roll call, the presiding officer shall inform the Council of the member's absence, state the reason for such absence and excuse the member's absence. The Secretary will make an appropriate notation in the minutes. If another Council member questions the member's absence, the presiding officer shall inquire if there is a motion to excuse the member. This motion shall be nondebatable. Upon passage of such motion by a majority of members present, the absent member shall be considered excused, and the Clerk will make an appropriate notation in the minutes.
H. 
Special Council meetings.
(1) 
Rule 8. Procedures for setting a special meeting are as follows:
(a) 
A special meeting may be called by the presiding officer or by written request of any three members of the Council.
(b) 
Notice of the special meeting shall be prepared in writing by the Secretary. The notice shall contain the following information about the meeting: time, place and business to be transacted.
(c) 
The notice shall be delivered by mail or personally to the residence of each Council member and the business office of each local newspaper and radio and television station which has on file a written request for notice of special meetings. The notice must be delivered at least 24 hours prior to the meeting.
(d) 
The notices provided in this section may be dispensed with in the following circumstances:
[1] 
As to any member who at or prior to the time the meeting convenes files with the Secretary a written waiver of notice.
[2] 
As to any member who was actually present at the meeting at the time it convenes.
[3] 
In the event a special meeting is called to deal with an emergency involving injury or damage to persons or property or the likelihood of such injury or damage, when time requirements of such notice would make notice impractical and increase the likelihood of such injury or damage.
I. 
Council meeting agenda.
(1) 
Rule 9. The Borough Manager, with review by the President of Council, shall arrange a list of such matters according to the order of business and prepare an agenda for the Council. A copy of the agenda and supporting materials shall be prepared for Council members and the press on or before 4:30 p.m. two working days before a regular Council meeting. The presiding officer, three Council members or the Borough Manager may introduce a new item to the agenda.
J. 
Chief administrative officer.
(1) 
Rule 10. The Borough Manager, as the chief administrative officer and head of the administrative branch of Borough government, or his/her designee shall attend all meetings of the Borough Council, unless excused by the presiding officer or Council. The Borough Manager may take part in the Council's discussion on all matters on the agenda and otherwise concerning the welfare of the Borough. In the event that the Borough Manager is unable to attend a Council meeting, he shall appoint another qualified staff member to attend the meeting on behalf of Borough management.
K. 
Secretary of the Council.
(1) 
Rule 11. The Borough Secretary shall be ex-officio Secretary of the Council and shall keep minutes and shall perform such other and further duties in the meeting as may be required by the Council, presiding officer or the Borough Manager. In the absence of the Borough Secretary, the Borough Manager shall appoint another qualified staff member to act as Secretary of the Council. The Borough Manager may serve as Secretary of the Council.
L. 
Solicitor.
(1) 
Rule 12. The Borough Solicitor is responsible to Council and reports directly to the President. The Solicitor shall work in conjunction with the Borough Manager. The Solicitor shall be selected by a majority vote following recommendation by an ad hoc solicitor search committee. The President and Borough Manager are to have direct contact with the Solicitor only. Members of Council must receive authorization from the President of Council to discuss items with the Solicitor.
A. 
Forms of address.
(1) 
Rule 13. The Mayor shall be addressed as "Mayor (surname)," "Your Honor" or "Mr./Madam Mayor." The President shall be addressed as "President (surname)." The Vice President shall be addressed as "Vice President (surname)." Members of the Council shall be addressed as "Council member (surname)."
B. 
Seating arrangement.
(1) 
Rule 14. Council members shall occupy the respective seats in the Council Chamber assigned to them by the presiding officer.
C. 
Appearance of fairness doctrine.
(1) 
Rule 15. Appearance of fairness doctrine and its application.
(a) 
Appearance of fairness doctrine defined. When public hearing gives the public not only the right to attend but the right to be heard as well, the hearing must not only be fair but must appear to be so. It is a situation where appearances are quite as important as substance. The test of whether the appearance of fairness doctrine has been violated is as follows: Would a disinterested person, having been apprised of the totality of a board member's personal interest in a matter being acted upon, be reasonably justified in thinking that partiality may exist? If answered in the affirmative, such deliberations and any course of conduct reached thereon should be voided.
(b) 
Types of hearings to which doctrine applies. The appearance of fairness doctrine shall apply only to those actions of the Council which are quasi-judicial in nature. Quasi-judicial actions are defined as actions of the Borough Council which determine the legal rights, duties or privileges of specific parties in a hearing or other contested proceeding. Quasi-judicial actions do not include the legislative actions adopting, amending or revising comprehensive, community or neighborhood plans or other land use planning documents or the adoption of area-wide zoning ordinances or the adoption of a zoning amendment that is of area-wide significance. Some examples of quasi-judicial actions which may come before the Council are: rezones or reclassifications of specific parcels of property, appeals from decisions of the Planning Commission, substantive appeals of threshold decisions under the state environmental protection laws, subdivisions, street vacations and special land use permits.
(c) 
Obligations of Council members; procedure.
[1] 
Council members should recognize that the appearance of fairness doctrine does not require establishment of a conflict of interest, but whether there is an appearance of conflict of interest to the average person. This may involve the Council member or a Council member's business associate or a member of the Council member's immediate family. It could involve ex parte communications, ownership of property in the vicinity, business dealings with the proponents or opponents before or after the hearing, business dealings of the Council member's employer with the proponents or opponents, announced predisposition and the like. Prior to any quasi-judicial hearing, each Council member should give consideration to whether a potential violation of the appearance of fairness doctrine exists. If a potential violation exists, no matter how remote, the Council member should disclose such facts to the Borough Manager, who may seek the opinion of the Borough Solicitor as to whether a potential violation exists. The Borough Manager shall communicate such opinion to the Council member and to the presiding officer.
[2] 
Anyone seeking to disqualify a Council member from participating in a decision on the basis of a violation of the appearance of fairness doctrine must raise the challenge as soon as the basis for disqualification is made known or reasonably should have been made known prior to the issuance of the decision; upon failure to do so, the doctrine may not be relied upon to invalidate the decision. The party seeking to disqualify the Council member shall state with specificity the basis for disqualification; for example, demonstrated bias or prejudice for or against a party to the proceedings; a monetary interest in outcome of the proceedings; prejudgment of the issue prior to hearing the facts on the record; or ex parte contact. Should such challenge be made prior to the hearing, the Borough Manager shall direct the Borough Solicitor to interview the Council member and render an opinion as to the likelihood that an appearance of fairness violation would be sustained in superior court. Should such challenge be made in the course of a quasi-judicial hearing, the presiding officer shall call a recess to permit the Borough Solicitor to make such interview and render such opinion.
[3] 
The presiding officer shall have sole authority to request a Council member to excuse himself/herself on the basis of an appearance of fairness violation. Further, if two or more Council members believe that an appearance of fairness violation exists, such individuals may move to request a Council member to excuse himself/herself on the basis of an appearance of fairness violation. In arriving at this decision, the presiding officer or other Council members shall give due regard to the opinion of the Borough Solicitor.
[4] 
Notwithstanding the request of the presiding officer or other Council members, the Council member may participate in any such proceeding.
(d) 
Specific statutory provisions.
[1] 
Candidates for the Borough Council may express their opinions about pending or proposed quasi-judicial actions while campaigning.
[2] 
A candidate for the Borough Council who complies with all provisions of applicable public disclosure and ethics laws shall not be limited under the appearance of fairness doctrine from accepting campaign contributions to finance the campaign, including outstanding debts.
[3] 
During the pendency of any quasi-judicial proceeding, no Council member may engage in ex parte (outside the hearing) communications with proponents or opponents about a proposal involved in the pending proceeding, unless the Council member:
[a] 
Places on the record the substance of such oral or written communications; and
[b] 
Provides that a public announcement of the content of the communication and of the parties' right to rebut the substance of the communication shall be made at each hearing where action is taken or considered on the subject. This does not prohibit correspondence between a citizen and his/her elected official if the correspondence is made a part of the record, when it pertains to the subject matter of a quasi-judicial proceeding.
(e) 
Public disclosure file. The Secretary shall maintain a public disclosure file, which shall be available for inspection by the public. As to members of the Planning Commission, the file shall contain for each member a disclosure statement. The Planning Commission disclosure statement shall list all real property and all business interests located in the Borough of Sewickley in which the member or the member's spouse, dependent children or other dependent relative living with the member have a financial interest.
(f) 
Procedure on application. Any person making application for any action leading to a quasi-judicial hearing shall be provided with a document containing the following information: 1) the names and address of all members of the Borough Council, the Planning Commission; 2) a statement that public disclosure information is available for public inspection regarding all such members; and 3) a statement that if the applicant intends to raise an appearance of fairness issue, the applicant should do so at least two weeks prior to any public hearing. The applicant shall acknowledge receipt of such document.
D. 
Dissents and protests.
(1) 
Rule 16. Any Council member shall have the right to express dissent from or protest against any ordinance or resolution of the Council and have the reason therefor entered in the minutes.
[Amended 11-15-2004 by Res. No. 2004-017]
A. 
Rules of order.
(1) 
Rule 17. Rules of order not specified by statute, ordinance or resolution shall be governed by Robert's Rules of Order. The Borough Manager or his/her designee shall serve as parliamentarian and shall advise the presiding officer as to correct rules of procedure or questions of specific rule application.
B. 
Motions.
(1) 
Rule 18. All ordinances, resolutions, contracts and items of business that require Council approval prior to the expenditure of funds shall be in the form of an affirmative motion. Once a motion has been made and seconded, each Council member shall be permitted to speak for a maximum of five minutes with respect to the motion. After every Council member who desires to speak initially with respect to the motion has spoken, each Council member shall be permitted to speak for an additional five minutes in response to the comments of other Council members. In the event a Council member wishes to extend debate, he/she may make a motion to do so, and a majority of Council shall have the right to vote to extend debate.
C. 
Order of business.
(1) 
Rule 19A.
(a) 
The business of all regular committee of the whole meetings of Council shall be transacted as follows; provided, however, the presiding officer may, during a committee of the whole meeting, rearrange items on the agenda to conduct the business before the Council more expeditiously:
[1] 
Call to order by the presiding officer.
[2] 
Comments from the public (see Rule 32 for procedures).
[3] 
Comments from the presiding officer.
[4] 
Report from Public Works Director/Zoning Officer.
[5] 
Solicitor report.
[6] 
Report from Borough Manager.
[7] 
Accounts payable/monthly financial statements.
[8] 
Report from Mayor.
[9] 
Comments from Council.
[10] 
Correspondence.
[11] 
Adjournment.
(b) 
In order for an item to be placed on the agenda for action at the committee of the whole meeting by anyone other than the President of Council, the item must be sent to the President of Council no later than 12:00 noon on the Friday preceding the committee of the whole meeting. At the discretion of the presiding officer during the committee of the whole meeting, or upon the approval of at least three Council members attending the committee of the whole meeting, an item may be added to the agenda for action at the committee of the whole meeting.
(2) 
Rule 19B.
(a) 
The business of all regular meetings of the Council shall be transacted as follows; provided, however, that the presiding officer may, during a Council meeting, rearrange items on the agenda to conduct the business before the Council more expeditiously:
[1] 
Call to order by presiding officer.
[2] 
Pledge of allegiance.
[3] 
Roll call (see Rule 21 for procedure).
[4] 
Approval of minutes.
[5] 
Comments from presiding officer.
[6] 
Statements of citizens (see Rule 32 for procedures).
[7] 
Unfinished business.
[a] 
Ordinances.
[b] 
Resolutions.
[c] 
Motions.
[d] 
Other.
[8] 
New business.
[a] 
Ordinances.
[b] 
Resolutions.
[c] 
Motions.
[d] 
Other.
[9] 
Approval of accounts.
[10] 
Departmental and commission reports.
[11] 
Borough Manager.
[12] 
Solicitor's report.
[13] 
Tax Collector's report.
[14] 
Mayor.
[15] 
Other business.
[16] 
Correspondence.
[17] 
Adjournment.
(b) 
No meeting shall be permitted to continue beyond 11:00 p.m. without approval of a majority of the Council members who are present and eligible to vote. A new time limit must be established before taking a Council vote to extend the meeting. In the event that a meeting has not been closed or continued by Council vote prior to 11:00 p.m., items not acted on shall be deferred to the next regular Council meeting, unless the Council, by a majority vote of members present, determines otherwise.
(c) 
In order for an item to be placed on the agenda for action at a regular meeting of Council, the item should, if at all practical, be discussed at the preceding committee of the whole meeting. In order for an item that was not discussed at the preceding committee of the whole meeting to be acted upon at a regular Council meeting, the item must be approved for consideration by at least three Council members attending the regular meeting.
D. 
Actions for a public hearing.
(1) 
Rule 20. The procedures for a public hearing are as follows:
(a) 
Prior to the start of the "comments from the public" portion of the public hearing, the presiding officer may require that all persons wishing to be heard shall sign in with the Secretary, giving their names and addresses, the agenda item and whether they wish to speak as proponent, opponent or otherwise. Any person who fails to sign in shall not be permitted to speak until all those who signed in have done so. At any public hearing all persons who have signed in and wish to be heard shall be heard. However, the presiding officer shall be authorized to invoke Rule 33 and otherwise establish speaker time limits and control presentations to avoid repetition. In public hearings that are not of a quasi-judicial nature, the presiding officer, subject to concurrence of the majority of the Council, may establish time limits and otherwise control presentations. The presiding officer may change the order of speakers so that testimony is heard in the most logical groupings (i.e., proponents, opponents, adjacent owners, vested interests, etc.).
(b) 
The presiding officer introduces the agenda item, opens the public hearing and announces the following rules of order:
[1] 
"All comments by proponents, opponents or the public shall be made from the speaker's rostrum and any individual making comments shall first give his/her name and address. This is required because an official record of the public hearing is being made. If there is any appeal to the State Court of Appeals, the court must make its decision on the basis of what was said here."
[2] 
"It is not necessary to be a proponent or opponent in order to speak. If you consider yourself neither a proponent nor opponent, please speak during the proponent portion and identify yourself as neither a proponent nor an opponent."
[3] 
"No comments shall be made from any other location and anyone making 'out of order' comments may be subject to removal from the meeting."
[4] 
"There will be no demonstrations during or at the conclusion of anyone's presentation."
[5] 
"These rules are intended to promote an orderly system of holding a public hearing, to give every person an opportunity to be heard, and to ensure that no individual is embarrassed by exercising his/her right of free speech."
(c) 
"At this time the opponents will have an opportunity to speak. Should any opponent have questions to ask of the proponents, ask the questions during your presentation. The proponents shall note the question asked, and answer such questions when the proponent speaks in rebuttal. The proponent shall be required to answer any reasonable question, provided that the presiding officer reserves the right to rule any question out of order."
(d) 
Opponents speak.
(e) 
The presiding officer calls for additional opponents three times.
(f) 
The presiding officer calls for proponents to speak in rebuttal. A proponent speaking in rebuttal shall not introduce new material. If the proponent does, or is allowed to do so, the opponents shall also be allowed to rebut the new elements.
(g) 
The presiding officer announces the following:
"At this time I will inquire of the administration as to whether there have been any misstatements of fact or whether the administration wishes to introduce any material as to subjects raised by the proponents or opponents or alter in any regard its initial recommendations."
(h) 
The presiding officer inquires as to whether any Council members have any questions to ask the proponents, opponents, speakers or administration. If any Council member has questions, the appropriate individual will be recalled to the podium.
(i) 
The presiding officer closes the public hearing.
(j) 
The presiding officer inquires if there is a motion by any Council members. If a motion is made, it shall be in the form of an affirmative motion. Following the motion and its second, discussion occurs among Council members. The presiding officer may call on individual Council members in the discussion.
(k) 
The presiding officer inquires if there is any further discussion by the Council members.
(l) 
The presiding officer inquires if there are any final comments or recommendations from administration.
(m) 
The presiding officer inquires of the Council members as to whether they are ready for the question.
(n) 
The Secretary shall conduct a roll call vote.
(o) 
The presiding officer directs administration to prepare findings consistent with the action.
E. 
Voting.
(1) 
Rule 21. The votes during all meetings of the Council shall be transacted as follows:
(a) 
Unless otherwise provided for by statute, ordinance or resolution, all votes shall be taken by voice, except that at the request of any Council member a roll call vote shall be taken by the Clerk. The order of the roll call vote shall be determined alphabetically with continuous rotation.
(b) 
In case of a tie in votes on any proposal, the Mayor shall cast the tie-breaking vote. In the case where the Mayor is not present at the meeting and the vote occurs, the proposal shall be considered lost.
(c) 
Every member who was in the Council chambers when the question was put shall give his/her vote unless the Council, for special reasons, shall excuse the member by motion or unless the Council member is excused in accordance with Rule 15. If any Council member declines to vote "aye" or "nay," his/her vote shall be counted as an "aye" vote. Members may abstain.
(d) 
The passage of any ordinance, grant or revocation of franchise or license, any resolution for the payment of money, any approval of warrants and any resolution pertaining to personnel actions shall require the affirmative vote of at least a majority of the whole membership of the Council.
(e) 
The passage of any motion or resolution not subject to the provisions of state or local law, or these rules as amended, shall require the affirmative vote of at least a majority of the membership of the Council who are present and eligible to vote.
F. 
Committees.
(1) 
Rule 22. The committee structure of the Council and the procedures governing all committees shall be as follows:
(a) 
Committee of the whole. The only standing committee of the Council shall be the Committee of the Whole (COW), composed of the entire Council sitting as a legislative study committee. The presiding officer chairs the COW.
(b) 
Council committees. The presiding officer, with concurrence of Council, shall appoint such committees as needed to efficiently operate the Borough.
(c) 
Special ad hoc Council study committees. Special ad hoc Council study committees may be created by the Council for a particular purpose or when the issue is so complex and time-consuming that it cannot be reasonably handled at a Council or COW meeting. Council study committees shall consist of three Council members appointed by the presiding officer. Special Council committees shall sunset at the end of their mission, but no later than the end of each calendar year, unless specifically continued by the Council thereafter for a specified time period.
(d) 
The Borough Manager and respective department heads shall strive to provide liaisons with additional information beyond that normally provided to the Council as a whole and to keep the liaisons abreast of developments, trends, conditions and issues in the various functional areas of local government.
(e) 
Special ad hoc citizen advisory committees. Special ad hoc citizen advisory committees may be created by the Council for a particular purpose. Committee members shall be appointed by the Borough Council. The presiding officer shall appoint the chair of the committee. Citizen study committees shall sunset at the end of their mission, but no later than the end of each calendar year, unless specifically continued by the Council thereafter for a specified time period. One or more Council members may be appointed as members.
(f) 
Committees may make recommendations on proposed programs, services, ordinances and resolutions within their area of responsibility before action is taken by the Council. The committee chair may present the recommendations of the committee during the discussion of the item of business.
(g) 
Employees shall staff the various committees as directed by the chief administrative officer, but no staff person shall serve as a member of a Council or citizen study committee.
(h) 
Minutes shall be taken of committee meetings.
G. 
Enacted ordinances, resolutions and motions.
(1) 
Rule 23.
(a) 
An enacted ordinance is a legislative act prescribing general, uniform and permanent rules of conduct relating to the corporate affairs of the Borough. Council action shall be taken by ordinance when required by law or to prescribe permanent rules of conduct which continue in force until repealed or where such conduct is enforced by penalty.
(b) 
An enacted resolution is an internal legislative act which is a formal statement of policy concerning matters of special or temporary character. Council action shall be taken by resolution when required by law and in those instances where an expression of policy more formal than a motion is desired.
(c) 
An enacted motion is a form of action taken by the Council to direct that a specific action be taken on behalf of the Borough. A motion, once approved and entered into the record, is the equivalent of a resolution in those instances where a resolution is not required by law.
H. 
Ordinances.
(1) 
Rule 24. The procedures for ordinances are as follows:
(a) 
Except as otherwise prescribed by the Borough Code and any other applicable laws, all ordinances shall be advertised once in a newspaper of general circulation, not more than 60 days nor less than seven days prior to the date of adoption. The title of each ordinance shall in all cases be read prior to its passage, provided that, should a majority of the Council members present request that the entire ordinance or certain of its sections be read, such requests shall be granted. Printed copies shall be made available upon request to any person attending a Council meeting.
(b) 
Passage, approval and veto of ordinances. Every ordinance, franchise and resolution of legislative character, except as otherwise provided by the Borough Code, shall be presented to the Mayor for his/her approval. If the Mayor approves, he/she shall sign it, but if he/she shall not so approve, he/she shall return it with his/her objections to Borough Council at the next regular meeting of Council. The objections shall be entered into the minutes of the proceedings of that meeting at which the veto was announced. Borough Council shall reconsider such ordinance at either that meeting or at any other meeting of Council, but in no case later than 10 days thereafter. If approved by a majority plus one of the membership of Council, the ordinance shall become effective as if the Mayor had signed.
(c) 
A Council member may, in open session, request of the presiding officer that the Council study the wisdom of enacting a particular ordinance. By affirmative motion, the Council may assign the proposed ordinance to a specific committee or the committee of the whole for study and consideration. The committee shall report its findings to the Council.
(d) 
If a motion to pass an ordinance fails, the ordinance shall be considered lost.
(e) 
Any ordinance amending or repealing any portion of the municipal code (Borough of Sewickley Code of Ordinances) shall also amend or repeal the respective portions of any underlying ordinance(s).
I. 
Permission required to address the Council.
(1) 
Rule 25. Persons other than Council members and management shall be permitted to address the Council upon recognition and introduction by the presiding officer or the chair of the appropriate Council committee, provided the provisions of Rule 33 have been met.
J. 
Reconsideration.
(1) 
Rule 26. Any action of the Council, including final action on applications for changes in land use status, but excluding a reconsideration of any action previously reconsidered; motions to adjourn; motions to suspend the rules; an affirmative vote to lay on the table or to take from the table; or a vote electing to office one who is present and does not decline, shall be subject to a motion to reconsider. Such motions can only be made by a member of the prevailing side on the original action. A motion to reconsider must be made no later than the next succeeding regular Council meeting. A motion to reconsider is debatable only if the action being reconsidered is debatable. Upon passage of a motion to reconsider, the subject matter is returned to the table anew at the next regular Council meeting for any action the Council deems advisable.
K. 
Council relations with boards, commissions and advisory committees.
(1) 
Rule 27.
(a) 
All statutory boards and commissions and Council citizen advisory bodies shall provide the Council with copies of any minutes taken of meetings. Communications from such boards, commissions and bodies to the Borough Council shall be recorded in the minutes as follows.
(b) 
Any such communication shall be officially acknowledged by the Council and receipt noted in the minutes. The procedure for acknowledging such receipt shall be that the chief administrative officer or any member of the Council may bring such communication to the presiding officer's attention under the agenda item "Committee and Board Reports." The presiding officer shall state: "So noted for the record," and thereafter the Clerk shall make an appropriate notation in the minutes. Should any member of the Council determine that any such communication be officially answered by the Council, the presiding officer shall add the matter to the agenda or defer to a subsequent meeting agenda.
L. 
Complaints and suggestions to Council.
(1) 
Rule 28. When citizen complaints or suggestions are brought before the Borough Council, other than for items already on an agenda, the presiding officer shall first determine whether the issue is legislative or administrative in nature and then:
(a) 
If legislative, and a complaint about the letter or intent of legislative acts or suggestions for changes to such acts, and if the Council finds such complaint suggests a change to an ordinance or resolution of the City, the Council may refer the matter to a committee, the administration or the Council of the whole for study and recommendation.
(b) 
If administrative, and a complaint regarding administrative staff performance, administrative execution or interpretation of legislative policy or administrative policy within the authority of the chief administrative officer, the presiding officer should then refer the complaint directly to the chief administrative officer for his/her review if said complaint has not been so reviewed. The Borough Council may direct that the chief administrative officer brief or report to the Council when his/her response is made.
M. 
Filling Council vacancies.
(1) 
Rule 29. If a vacancy occurs in the office of Council member, the Council will follow the procedures outlined in the Borough Code. In order to fill the vacancy with the most qualified person available until an election is held, the Council will widely distribute and publish a notice of the vacancy, the procedure and any application for applying. The Council will draw up an application form which contains relevant information to answer set questions posed by the Council. The application forms will be used in conjunction with an interview of each candidate to aid the Council's selection of the new Council member.
N. 
Photographs, motion pictures, video tape; permission required for artificial illumination.
(1) 
Rule 30. The media is welcome and free to stand in an area as directed by the presiding officer.
O. 
Council travel.
(1) 
The Council may appropriate funds for Council travel in the legislative department of the annual Borough budget. Any Council member who desires to expend Council travel funds, where the cost of such travel, lodging and meals would exceed $100, shall submit the request to Borough Council in writing. Upon receipt by the chief administrative officer, the completed form will be put in the Council packets for the next regular meeting. The chief administrative officer shall bring the item to the floor under new business, and the Council shall act to approve, disapprove or modify the request.
P. 
Procedures for citizens addressing Council.
(1) 
Rule 32. The following procedures shall govern the presentation of verbal and/or written communications to Borough Council at public meetings held by Council.
(a) 
Recognition of individuals or groups wishing to make verbal or written presentations to Borough Council.
[1] 
Any person/group wishing to address Borough Council at a public meeting held by Borough Council shall be given a time on the agenda of that meeting, such time not to exceed five minutes in length, at which such presentation shall be made to Council. Matters involving details that will exceed the five-minute time limit shall be presented in writing, accompanied by a verbal overview not to exceed the five-minute time limit. Cassette recordings may be presented in place of a written document.
[2] 
Groups wishing to address Borough Council shall designate a spokesperson to make all presentation and discussion before Council. The individual representing the group shall provide his/her name and address to be entered into the minutes of such meeting prior to addressing Council. The presenting individual shall be responsible for maintaining the order of the group during the presentation. Upon verbal petition to Borough Council following the presentation by the group spokesperson, Council may recognize up to two additional members of the group, for a period of five minutes each, provided that such additional presentation shall not be repetitious of the group spokesperson. Borough Council shall not allow additional debate by any individual attending the meeting. Comments by individuals other than those which are members of the group shall be governed by rules for "individuals with standing," as outlined under Subsection P(1)(b) of these rules.
[3] 
Borough Council may, at its own discretion, debate, discuss and vote upon the matters presented in verbal form. However, a motion to table shall place the matter on the agenda for discussion at a later meeting to be held in compliance with the State Sunshine Act.[1] Motion to remove from table in accordance with Robert's Rules of Order is required. In the event of written material presented to Borough Council, Council shall in all cases table the matter until the next scheduled meeting to allow all Council members adequate time for review of the presented materials.
[1]
Editor's Note: See 65 Pa.C.S.A. § 701 et seq.
(b) 
Recognition of "individuals with standing" wishing to address Borough Council on current topic.
[1] 
Any individual with standing before Borough Council may request to be recognized during a public Borough Council meeting, whenever such comment is relevant to the topic currently on the table and being discussed by Council. Upon such recognition, an individual, having his/her name and address entered into the record of said meeting, shall have five minutes to address Council, provided that such discussion shall be relevant to the current topic being discussed by Council. Borough Council shall provide the recognized individual the right of free expression, without interference from other individuals or groups present, provided that such free expression shall be relevant to the issue and that such expression shall be nonoffensive in nature. Borough Council shall limit such verbal presentation by individuals to the number of individuals with new relevant comments concerning the topic. Council shall not allow the recognition of individuals with repetitious comment for the purpose of prolonging the discussion. Upon the presentation of commentary on the current topic, Borough Council, by motion, may table the topic until the next public meeting of Borough Council. Such action to table by Borough Council shall terminate discussion on said topic until the next public Borough Council meeting.
[2] 
During the presentation of any recognized individual before Borough Council, Council shall ensure the right of such presentation without interruption by others present. In the event of the interruption of such presentation by others present, Council shall ensure the discountenance of such interruption in a parliamentary manner, including, whenever necessary, the removal of such individuals from Council Chambers. In the event such disruption cannot be discontinued, Borough Council by motion shall temporarily adjourn the proceedings until such time as order can be restored. At such time as Council can reconvene the meeting, the individual previously recognized shall have the opportunity to address Borough Council on the topic having been discussed prior to the adjournment, as if such individual had just been recognized by Council.
(c) 
Recognition of "individuals without standing" wishing to address Borough Council on current topic.
[1] 
Any individual without standing before Borough Council may request to be recognized during a public Borough Council meeting, whenever such comment is relevant to the topic currently on the table and being discussed by Council, provided that the individual requesting such permission can demonstrate that his/her presentation is offered as that of a "friend of the Council" and is of a nature that will be beneficial to Borough Council in making any determination necessary to the topic being discussed. The President of Borough Council or any other Council member shall make such determination of beneficial content of the presentation. In the event recognition is granted, such presentation shall be limited to a period of no more than five minutes in length.