Noblesville Announces New Public Meeting Safety Measures

11/13/2020

In response to Governor Holcomb’s latest action on COVID-related closures statewide and for counties on the state’s targeted engagement list, the City of Noblesville will pivot to a hybrid of combined virtual and in person meetings. These changes will begin with the Noblesville Plan Commission meeting on November 16.

In an ongoing effort to protect public health and prevent the spread of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19), and to ensure the public’s right to fully participate in providing meaningful public comments, the Noblesville Plan Commission will meet in person and allow public comment via teleconference as well as in-person public comment to the extent that available meeting space and social distancing will allow. The public is advised of the following ways to participate in the meeting:

  1. Those that wish to address the plan commission in person are asked to fill out a speaking card beginning at 5:15 p.m. at City Hall. Speakers are also asked to pre-register and fill out a speaking card by Monday, November 19 at 4:30 p.m. to save their spot here: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/8VKXYYQ.
  2. Email comments to Daschleman@noblesville.in.us by 4:00 p.m. prior to the meeting Monday. Comments received after the cut off will be included as part of the record as early as possible; or
  3. To comment during the public hearing, call (469) 998-6201, entering the Meeting ID: 877-036-214#. The public can begin joining the speaker queue at 5 p.m. Once a caller has entered the meeting, they will be placed in a holding queue. Callers will be prompted to speak in the order received, and after a staff member confirms the last four digits of their phone number, participants are encouraged to identify themselves by name. Each caller will be provided three (3) minutes to speak, consistent with applicable Plan Commission procedures. If a person is representing a group, they will be allotted five (5) minutes to speak.

“We know that agenda includes a very controversial topic in our community, and we appreciate the significant civic participation and advocacy that has occurred in recent weeks. We welcome in-person attendance for any resident to voice their opinion or concern, but we want to ensure that the public is aware of the multiple platforms that are available to listen, speak, and participate in the public process.  Social distancing guidelines impact the amount of available space we have at city hall,” Planning Director Caleb Gutshall said.

Per social distancing guidelines, the Council Chambers will allow seating for 38 residents. The city is asking that participants coordinate to the extent possible and consider prioritizing these seats for those wanting to address the plan commission during the public hearing. Additional seating for speakers will be available in the hallway outside the chambers. A staff member will assist in lining up the next speaker.

The city will use A-213 and A-214 within City Hall as overflow rooms that will livestream the plan commission meeting. Seating for those rooms will be capped at 40 people. If needed, the staff break room and first floor lobby also will livestream the meeting and be available for the public.

In accordance with the adopted Noblesville Council Rules and Procedures, disruptive behavior and profane language will not be tolerated. Failure to maintain decorum may cause the speaker to be disconnected from the meeting.

Additional sanitizer stands will be placed at entrances and high touch locations. Sanitary wipes will be available for disinfecting the microphone and podium once a speaker has concluded their remarks. Face masks will be mandatory for those in attendance.

City staff members will be available to assist members of the public at the meeting and answer questions about the new protocols.

All members of the public may watch and listen into the meeting live via these remote options:

The City of Noblesville is following public health advice from state and county officials and CDC guidelines to take precautionary measures to minimize opportunities for viral transmission. One step is to significantly reduce large in-person meetings.

The City of Noblesville thanks residents for their ongoing patience and flexibility as we continue to balance safety and public participation.