Commissioners adopt consent agenda for session

BATAVIA, Ohio (Jan. 24, 2017) – The Clermont County Board of Commissioners (BCC) have begun using a consent agenda at regularly scheduled sessions. At its meeting on Jan. 18, the BCC approved an updated policy on the use of a consent agenda.

Consent agendas are often used by governmental bodies and boards. This approach will allow the BCC to streamline session by putting routine items, which may include travel and training, annual contract renewals, standard financial transactions, and routine personnel moves, into the consent agenda. Commissioners can then approve the consent agenda with one vote, instead of separate votes for each item.

“There will be no substantive change to how the board operates,” said County Administrator Stephen Rabolt. “All agenda items and documentation will be published and available for the public to access.”

The county administration meets weekly to determine agenda items for the next week’s sessions. During that planning meeting, administrators decide which items will go to the consent agenda, and which remain on the regular agenda, Rabolt said. Commissioners have the ability to pull any item out of the consent agenda either before or during session it they want to open it up for discussion.

The published agenda will also detail in full, as it does now, the explanation for each item, whether it is on the consent or regular agenda.

Adopting a consent agenda will allow the board more time to hear community presentations during session, Rabolt said.

It also frees up staff resources. Department heads or elected officials who have items on the agenda typically appear in person to read the item during session, and will no longer have to do that, said David Uible, President of the BCC. “Adopting a consent agenda allows us to make better use of staff time,” he said. “At the same time we will continue to ensure transparency on every item that comes before the board.”

Commissioner Ed Humphrey, Vice President of the Board, and Commissioner David Painter noted that having additional time during session to hear from various organizations and jurisdictions in Clermont County would allow commissioners to stay current and knowledgeable on issues throughout the county.