A few weeks ago, on 2/18/09, the first Ordinance generated in my office was passed unanimously by the City Council. It will allow the Council to hold evening meetings on any Wednesday or Thursday, changing the previous Code which specified that evening meetings may be scheduled routinely only on the third Wednesday of the month. Under the new Code, any member of the Council may request an evening hearing at least two weeks in advance. A majority of the five must agree to the motion. This Code change will give increased flexibility to the Council, reduce the need for "Special Meetings", and hopefully increase the number of meetings held in the evening when more working people can attend.
The Code already allows the Council to hold meetings anywhere within city limits, so there is no need to add that provision in order to have sessions in neighborhoods rather than in City Hall.
I was very happy my colleagues voted for this change. I hope we will have more evening meetings, soon. The one held at the Midland Library in East Portland, on the East Portland Action Plan, was packed, and heartwarming.