Next week is the November Greensboro City Council town hall meeting where the council listens to what speakers have to say and then adjourns.

However, if you have something to say to the City Council and show up at 5:30 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 5, you will find city hall locked.

November’s town hall City Council meeting is Monday, Nov. 4 at 5:30 p.m. at the Griffin Recreation Center, 5301 Hilltop Road, Jamestown. The Griffin Recreation Center is not actually in Jamestown, but it is far enough out that it has a Jamestown mailing address.

This is the fifth offsite town hall meeting, so it is in District 5.

This is also the first meeting where speakers have advance notice of the new rules imposed by Mayor Nancy Vaughan. Several councilmembers said they were not consulted about the new rules and the City Council certainly never discussed the rules much less voted on them.

The rules that Vaughan read at the beginning of the October town hall meeting have been revised or tweaked a little by the city legal department. The wording may be a little different but the message is the same that speakers are not allowed to:

  • attack a particular city employee
  • make comments primarily focused on litigation involving the city
  • make comments that appear to incite unlawful behavior

A good number of speakers in the past have demanded that Police Chief Wayne Scott be fired and talked about the death of Marcus Deon Smith whose family is currently suing the city. Those comments would not be allowed. One speaker often recommends that people interfere with police officers doing their jobs, which is unlawful and that also would not be allowed by the new rules.

According to the schedule, the December town hall City Council meeting will be back at city hall, but that is certainly not a sure thing. There is still plenty of time for the City Council to come up with some different locations.

Greensboro has two state universities. Why not have the City Council meet on the campuses of NC A&T State University and UNCG, to reach out to the tens of thousands of college students in Greensboro?