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File #: 200001-A    Version: Name:
Type: Resolution Status: ADOPTED
File created: 1/6/2020 In control: CITY COUNCIL
On agenda: Final action: 1/23/2020
Title: To provide Rules for the Government of the Council of the City of Philadelphia.
Sponsors: Councilmember Quiñones Sánchez
Indexes: CITY COUNCIL
Attachments: 1. Resolution No. 20000100, 2. Resolution No. 200001-A01, As Amended on Floor.pdf, 3. SignatureCopy200001-A01.pdf

Title

To provide Rules for the Government of the Council of the City of Philadelphia.

Body

RESOLVED, By the Council of the City of Philadelphia, That for the government of this Council the following Rules are hereby adopted:

 

 

I. Meetings

 

                     1. The Council shall meet at scheduled Thursday sessions at ten o’clock A.M. Additional meetings shall be held at such other times as the Council, by vote of the majority of all the members shall provide. The Council, by a vote of a majority of all the members may suspend a stated meeting, or recess or adjourn to a specified time.

 

                     2. The President of the Council may call special meetings of the Council whenever in the President’s opinion the public business requires, and the President shall be required to call special meetings whenever five (5) members of the Council make a written request therefor. In the case of a special meeting the subject or subjects to be considered shall be specified in the call therefor, and such subject or subjects alone shall be considered at the said special meeting to the exclusion of all other matters, unless the Council shall by vote of two-thirds of all the members agree thereto at the said special meeting.

 

                     Written notice of all special meetings of the Council shall be forwarded to all members of Council not less than forty-eight (48) hours (excluding Sunday) preceding the same, unless there shall be waiver of such notice at or before the time fixed for the said special meeting.

 

                     3. A quorum shall consist of a majority of all the members of the Council, but a smaller number may adjourn from day to day, and compel the attendance of absent members. Should no quorum attend within thirty (30) minutes after the hour appointed for the meeting of the Council, the Council may thereupon adjourn until the next day, or from day to day, until such time as a quorum shall be present. The names of the members present and their action at such meeting or meetings shall be entered upon the Journal.

 

                     If, at any time during the session of the Council, a question shall be raised by a member as to the presence of a quorum, and it shall be shown that a quorum is not present, it shall be the duty of the President of the Council to announce the result of the roll call and note the absentees, after which the absentees shall again be called, and those for whose absence no excuse or insufficient excuse is made, may, by order of a majority of the members present, be summoned by the Sergeant-at-Arms or by assistants appointed for the purpose and brought before the bar of the Council, where, unless excused by a majority of the members present, they shall be reproved by the President of the Council for neglect of duty. These proceedings shall be without debate and no motion except to adjourn, shall be in order. While the Council is under a quorum call, only members and officers of the Council shall be admitted, and no member shall be permitted to leave the Councilmanic Chambers, unless by a majority vote of the members present.

 

                     4. The meetings of the Council shall be at all times open and accessible to the public. No person shall be permitted on the floor of Council but the members, the officers and employees of Council and representatives of the City press who shall have a place assigned to them.

 

                     5. Each stated or special meeting shall be opened by prayer, either by a permanent Chaplain, or by a temporary Chaplain designated by the President of City Council.

 

 

II. The President of Council

 

                     1. The President of the Council shall be elected from among its members upon the organization of the Council, or upon the occurrence of a vacancy in said office, and such election shall be by a majority of all the members of the Council by a roll call vote. The President shall serve at the pleasure of the majority of the members of Council. In the event of the President’s prolonged absence or disability, the Council shall elect from amongst its members, a President Pro Tempore; however, in case of a brief temporary absence, the President shall appoint a President Pro Tempore during said absence.

 

                     2. The President of the Council shall preside over all sessions of the Council. In the event of the President’s temporary absence from the Chair the President shall designate an acting President Pro Tempore. The acting President Pro Tempore, during the absence of the President, shall exercise all powers of the President.

 

                     3. The President shall preserve order and decorum, enforce all rules adopted for the government of Council, prevent personal reflection, confine members in debate to the question under discussion; and when two (2) or more members rise at the same time for recognition of the Chair, decide who shall first be heard. The President shall decide all questions of order subject to an appeal made by two (2) members. The President’s decision on questions of order shall not be debated, except upon appeal from the President’s decisions. Questions of order may be raised while an appeal is pending, but no appeal from the decision of the presiding officer on such questions may be taken while the first appeal is pending.

 

                     4. While in the Chair the President shall take no part in debate, but may at any time state from the Chair any facts of which the President may have knowledge and give information pertaining to business before the Council.

 

                     5. The President shall vote on all questions, but the President’s vote shall be the last to be recorded.

 

                     6. The President shall certify by signature all ordinances, orders, petitions, and resolutions adopted, and leases and contracts required to be authorized by the Council.

 

                     Writs, warrants and subpoenas issued by the request of the Council, as authorized by Chapter 2-401 of the Philadelphia Home Rule Charter, shall be signed by the President and attested by the Chief Clerk. Writs, warrants and subpoenas issued by any Committee of the Council shall be signed by the Chairperson of said Committee or in the Chair’s absence, by the Acting Chairperson thereof and attested by the Chief Clerk.

 

                     7. The President, after consultation with the Majority Leader, Majority Whip and Majority Deputy Whip (“Majority Leadership”), shall appoint all standing committees and the Chairperson and Vice Chairperson thereof, and may fill all vacancies that may occur from time to time therein; except as otherwise expressly provided in these rules.

 

                     The Majority Leader shall serve at the pleasure of the majority of the members nominated by the political party with a majority of Council members. The Minority Leader shall serve at the pleasure of the majority of members nominated by the political party with a minority of Council members.

 

The Majority Whip shall serve at the pleasure of the majority of the members nominated by the political party with a majority of Council members. The Minority Whip shall serve at the pleasure of the majority of members nominated by the political party with a minority of Council members.

 

The Majority Deputy Whip shall serve at the pleasure of the majority of the members nominated by the political party with a majority of Council members.

 

                     No member of Council, once appointed, may be removed from the Chair or Vice-Chair of any standing Committee of Council, except upon a vote of a majority of all the members of Council. The only exception to this procedure shall be the specific procedures set forth in paragraph III(1) providing for removal of members from the Committee on Ethics.

 

                     The President, after consultation with the Majority Leadership, shall also appoint all special committees and the Chairs and Vice-Chairs thereof, and may fill vacancies that occur therein. The President, as well as the Majority Leader, shall be a member of every committee, except on the Committee on Ethics, if removed from the committee as provided herein.

 

                     8. The President shall appoint and dismiss at the President’s discretion the employees of the Council with the following exceptions:

 

                                          a. The Chief Clerk of Council, who shall be elected or removed by the vote of a majority of all the members of the Council.

 

                                          b. The personnel serving each individual Council member, who shall be appointed or dismissed as directed by the Council member being served.

 

                     9. All employees of the Council shall have no less than the same leave entitlements that non-represented city employees enjoy under the Family and Medical Leave Act of 1993 and other leave policies as delineated in the City's Administrative Board Rule #11 as amended March 8, 2019.

 

                     10. The President shall administer to the employees of the Council an oath or affirmation that they will severally support the Constitutions of the United States and of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and the Philadelphia Home Rule Charter. All officers and employees shall attend to and faithfully perform their duties.

 

                     11. The President shall have general direction of the Councilmanic chambers, the committee rooms and administrative offices of the Council.

 

                     12. The President shall arrange for the transcription of the proceedings of all Council sessions and all public hearings.

 

                     13. The President of City Council may appoint a representative to act in the President’s stead at any meetings of any City board, commission or advisory committee of which the President is an ex-officio member and at any meetings of the Board of Directors of a quasi-public agency or public authority of which the President is an ex-officio member. Said representative shall have the right to exercise all the powers, including the right to vote, and to perform all the duties vested in and imposed upon the President of City Council by virtue of membership on such boards, commissions and advisory committees.

 

 

III. Standing Committees

 

                     1. The Standing Committees shall be as follows:

 

COMMITTEE ON RULES

(Consisting of not less than five (5) members.)

 

                     The Committee shall make recommendations designed to improve and expedite the business and procedure of Council, and its committees, and propose to Council any amendments to the rules deemed necessary regarding the organization of the Council, including the rules of parliamentary procedure. It may consider any matters of a general nature.

 

                     All matters relating to municipal development and zoning, the City Planning Commission, Housing and Redevelopment Authorities, the Art Commission and such other matters as the Council President may determine.

 

COMMITTEE ON FINANCE

(Consisting of not less than five (5) members.)

 

                     All matters relating to finance, taxation and the indebtedness of the City; more specifically, all matters relating to taxes, water and sewer rents, fees, charges, fines, penalties, the operating and capital budgets; the care and control of public funds; all matters relating to electoral and Councilmanic loans and the Sinking Fund; and all matters relating to revenue sharing from the Commonwealth and of the United States government.

 

COMMITTEE ON APPROPRIATIONS

(Consisting of not less than five (5) members.)

 

                     All matters relating to the appropriation of funds, the payment of moneys not provided for by previous authority of law, the procurement of equipment and supplies; and all matters affecting the receipt, disbursement, transfer or other use of City money and the audit of the same; provided, however, that should any matter be referred to any other committee requiring an appropriation the said legislation should be re-referred to the Committee on Appropriations following the action of the aforesaid committee.

 

COMMITTEE ON LAW AND GOVERNMENT

(Consisting of not less than five (5) members.)

 

                     All matters within the scope of the Law Department, the Administrative Board, the codification of Councilmanic ordinances, claims against the City based upon moral obligation to make payment, all matters affecting the former County offices, all matters concerning elections, recall and special elections, all matters relating to the implementation of the Charter, or amendments thereto, and all other matters in which legal aspects are involved; all other matters relating to cooperation with the Federal, State, inter-City and inter-County governments; and matters relating to human rights, civil rights, workers rights, and protection against discrimination.

 

COMMITTEE ON ETHICS

(Consisting of the Committee of the Whole Council.)

 

                     The Committee shall conduct investigations of individual members of the Council after:

 

                                          a. The Council by majority vote shall have approved the filing of charges against such members for alleged violations of Chapter 20-600 of the Philadelphia Code or these Rules; and

 

                                          b. The Council shall have approved by majority vote a resolution authorizing such investigation.

 

                     There shall be separate resolutions relating to each individual, to be considered separately by the Council and each resolution shall contain a list of all charges and alleged violations. The accused member of Council may provide self representation or may be represented during such an investigation by counsel.

 

                     Any member named in a Resolution of Council to be the subject of an investigation by the Committee is automatically removed from the Committee until the conclusion of the part of the investigation as it refers to that member.

 

                     If a member under investigation should resign from positions in Council or from office before the completion of the investigation, the investigation may be terminated by a majority vote of all members of the Committee. Upon completion of an investigation of a member of Council, the Committee shall make its recommendation to the Council, and the Council shall take whatever actions it deems appropriate. All matters which come under this Committee, including hearings, actions and recommendations shall be conducted in public, except when the Committee by majority vote goes into executive session.

 

LEGISLATIVE OVERSIGHT COMMITTEE

(Consisting of not less than five (5) members.)

 

                     All matters related to the legislative acts of Council. It is to check with the Executive and Judicial branches on the enforcement of laws passed by Council, on the carrying out of projects voted by the Council, the budgetary expenditures as allowed in the various budget funds, and matters relating to the Pennsylvania Convention Center.

 

COMMITTEE ON COMMERCE AND ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT

(Consisting of not less than five (5) members.)

 

                     All matters relating to the Department of Commerce, and its departmental boards; the port and airport facilities, and the rates and charges for the use thereof; the City Representative, Philadelphia Industrial Development Corporation, the Philadelphia Authority for Industrial Development, the Philadelphia Commercial Development Corporation and the Philadelphia Workforce Development Corporation.

 

                     All matters relating to the Civic Center complex, celebrations, parades and other similar functions.

 

                     All matters relating to the promotion of commerce, economic development and employment within the City.

 

                     All matters relating to the expenditure of Federal and State funds for the promotion of economic development and employment within the City.

 

COMMITTEE ON PUBLIC PROPERTY AND PUBLIC WORKS

(Consisting of not less than five (5) members.)

 

                     All matters relating to City property and buildings, excluding Fairmount Park and other City parks; the cleaning, maintenance and repair of the same; the organization and assignment of all court rooms, Councilmanic meeting rooms, adequate office space in connection with the efficient operation of the same; the assignment of office space, storage space and other buildings owned or leased by the City for City use; all matters relating to the Department of Records, all matters relating to the Gas Commission; the City water and sewage disposal systems; and matters relating to the furnishing of gas, electricity, and steam from City facilities wherein such facilities are not under lease to others.

 

COMMITTEE ON STREETS AND SERVICES

(Consisting of not less than five (5) members.)

 

                     All matters relating to the Department of Streets and its departmental boards; more specifically City streets, bridges, alleyways and driveways, the roads and drives in Fairmount Park; the light of the same; sanitation as to the general cleanliness and health of the City as it relates to the above City streets, etc., including the cleaning of the City streets, the removal and disposal of ashes, garbage, refuse, ice and snow, and the construction, repair, maintenance and operation of incinerators for the disposition of ashes, garbage and refuse; traffic engineering regulations, as to traffic flow and parking on City streets and on the roads and drives in Fairmount Park; the establishment of traffic signs, signals, markings and devices for the regulation and control of vehicular and pedestrian traffic; and all matters relating to the surveying functions of the City.

 

COMMITTEE ON LICENSES AND INSPECTIONS

(Consisting of not less than five (5) members.)

 

                     All matters relating to licenses and inspections, building safety and sanitation, and building, housing, and electrical codes and standards.

 

COMMITTEE ON LABOR AND CIVIL SERVICE

(Consisting of not less than five (5) members.)

 

                     All matters relating to labor relations, the Civil Service Commission, the Personnel Director, and the Board of Pensions and Retirement.

 

COMMITTEE ON PUBLIC SAFETY

(Consisting of not less than five (5) members.)

 

                     All matters relating to the Police and Fire Departments, civilian defense and its coordination with Federal and State governments; fire codes and fire prevention programs.

 

                     Matters relating to the illegal use and possession of narcotics and drugs, cooperation with law enforcement agencies, Courts, Departments of Public health and Department of Public Welfare and educational and research organizations to control and prevent the illegal traffic in and use of narcotics and drugs.

 

COMMITTEE ON PUBLIC HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES

(Consisting of not less than five (5) members.)

 

                     All matters relating to the public health, and the Air Pollution Control Board; the coordination of health programs and facilities with Federal and State governments. Promoting a healthy environment and the elimination of pollution.

 

                     All matters relating to the Department of Human Services and its departmental boards; the care and placing of dependent, mentally disabled, neglected, incorrigible and delinquent children and the mentally disabled, aged, infirm and destitute adults whose support is maintained out of the City Treasury or out of other funds which are administered by City Boards or Commissions; and matters relating to the City penal, reformatory and correctional institutions, homes for the indigent and other welfare institutions operated by the City. All matters relating to the rehabilitation and treatment of narcotic and drug addicts.

 

COMMITTEE ON PARKS, RECREATION AND CULTURAL AFFAIRS

(Consisting of not less than five (5) members.)

 

                     All matters relating to the Department of Recreation, the Recreation Coordination Board, City parks, including Fairmount Park, and the recreational program conducted by the Board of Public Education of the School District; the Board of Trustees of Camp William Penn, professional sports facilities and ground appurtenant thereto; matters relating to the Mann Music Center and Robin Hood Dell, the annual Mummers Parade; and matters relating to the management of certain historical shrines acquired by the City through ownership or custody.

 

COMMITTEE ON TRANSPORTATION AND PUBLIC UTILITIES

(Consisting of not less than five (5) members.)

 

                     All matters relating to transportation facilities of any kind and the charges, regulations and operations of same.

 

                     Relations with the State Public Utility Commission and the Federal Interstate Commerce Commission; matters relating to tolls and charges on State, Federal and Interstate bridges and highways.

 

COMMITTEE ON EDUCATION

(Consisting of not less than five (5) members.)

 

                     All matters relating to education in the public schools of Philadelphia excepting matters referred to the Committee of the Whole.

 

COMMITTEE ON FISCAL STABILITY AND INTERGOVERNMENTAL

COOPERATION

(Consisting of not less than five (5) members.)

 

                     All matters relating to the Pennsylvania Intergovernmental Cooperation Authority

and the City’s Five Year Financial Plan.

 

COMMITTEE ON HOUSING, NEIGHBORHOOD DEVELOPMENT AND THE HOMELESS

(Consisting of not less than five (5) members.)

 

                     All matters relating to the creation and maintenance of housing within the City, including public housing and affordable private housing; all matters relating to the alleviation of homelessness and services provided to homeless individuals within the City.

 

COMMITTEE ON TECHNOLOGY AND INFORMATION SERVICES

(Consisting of not less than (5) members.)

 

                     All matters relating to City information technology planning and implementation; how appropriate technologies can assist in making the City safe and livable for all; increasing technological literacy of City residents and improving their access to technology.

 

COMMITTEE ON THE ENVIRONMENT

(Consisting of not less than five (5) members.)

 

                     All matters relating to air and water quality; environmental initiatives such as green space, waste management and clean fuel; and new technologies to conserve resources.

 

COMMITTEE ON PEOPLE WITH DISABILITIES AND SPECIAL NEEDS

(Consisting of not less than five (5) members.)

 

                      The Committee shall undertake to examine all issues regarding the disabled population of Philadelphia; and to propose recommendations and/or laws where appropriate to elevate this population to accessibility in their daily activities with the able-bodied population of Philadelphia.

 

COMMITTEE ON GLOBAL OPPORTUNITIES AND THE CREATIVE/INNOVATIVE ECONOMY

(Consisting of not less than five (5) members.)

 

                     All matters related to international relationships, international commerce, international visitors, international business, global marketing and investments from overseas.

 

                     All matters related to foreign governments and overseas entities, cultural exchanges, trade missions, global partnering and strategic alliances.

 

                     All matters related to developing and promoting Philadelphia's creative/innovative economy on a global basis.

 

                     All matters related to making Philadelphia a world class city and international destination for international persons and entities.

 

COMMITTEE ON INTERGENERATIONAL AFFAIRS AND AGING

(Consisting of not less than five (5) members.)

 

                     Matters relating to issues confronting older people, including, but not limited to, financial security, opportunities for and barriers to employment, age discrimination, health concerns, aging in place, visitable homes, assistance with estate issues, and end-of-life considerations.

 

COMMITTEE ON CHILDREN AND YOUTH

(Consisting of not less than five (5) members.)

 

                     Matters relating to children and youth, including, but not limited to, early learning, child care, economic and food security among families, safe and supportive family environments, mental and emotional health, juvenile justice, supplemental learning opportunities, and youth employment and job readiness.

 

 

IV. Regulation of Committees

 

1. Before a bill shall be considered by the Council, it shall be referred by the President to the appropriate committee, considered at a public hearing and a public meeting, reported by the committee, printed as reported, distributed to the members of Council, and made available to the public.

 

                     2. A hearing on a bill shall only be held at the request of the principal sponsor of the bill, and only after such request has been approved in writing by the Chair of the committee to which the bill was referred and by the President. Notice of public hearings on bills referred to committees shall be advertised not less than five (5) days in advance thereof in the daily newspaper of the City having the largest paid circulation and in the official legal newspaper issued in the City, except that with respect to zoning bills, notice by advertising not less then fifteen (15) days in advance shall be required. The title of the bill and the time and place of the hearing shall be stated in said advertisement.

 

                     Notice, giving the time, date and place of a public meeting to determine action of a committee on bills referred to it, shall be advertised, not less than three (3) days prior to the time of the public meeting, in a newspaper of general circulation, as defined by the Newspaper Advertising Act of July 9, 1976, published in Philadelphia.

 

                     A copy of the notice shall be posted at the office of the Chief Clerk of Council. The notice of the public hearing and public meeting may be combined in one (1) advertisement.

 

                     The public hearing shall be held under the jurisdiction of the committee chairperson (or in the Chair’s absence the acting chairperson) and shall be for the purpose of eliciting relevant information and opinions on the bill(s) then before the committee. At such hearings, any person desiring to testify on the bill(s) shall be permitted to speak, subject to normal rules of procedure.

 

                     All members of the Administration who wish to testify shall provide the members of the City Council with their testimony, in writing, at least forty-eight (48) hours, excluding weekends and legal holidays, in advance of their scheduled testimony.

 

                     The public meetings of committees shall be for the purpose of discussion of the bill(s) by and between members of the committee only, but any one may attend. The vote taken on said bill(s) shall be at such public meeting and shall be duly recorded. At such public meetings the committee chairperson (or in the Chairperson’s absence, the acting chairperson) may adopt such rules and regulations as are necessary to maintain proper order and decorum in the room.

 

                     At the public meeting to determine the action of the committee on bills referred to it, only the chairperson of the committee (or in the Chair’s absence the acting chairperson) shall call for motions regarding a bill; and upon receiving a motion duly seconded shall poll the committee, report the vote and take the action decided by said committee.

 

                     At the public hearings and public meetings of the Council and its committees the microphones shall remain open at all times so all persons participating may be heard by the members of the committee, the public, the media and the recording stenographer. The stenographer shall record the entire proceedings including any discussions, policy determinations, and any vote taken. As soon as practical after the hearing and/or meeting the entire record shall be transcribed.

 

                     The transcripts of all hearings and meetings shall be delivered to the Chief Clerk of the Council where they shall be kept available to the public for inspection, reading or copying at reasonable times, but not removable from the Chief Clerk’s office. The Chief Clerk shall have the right to adopt and enforce reasonable rules governing the making of extracts, copies, photographs or photostats.

 

                     Notice of bills reported from Committee shall be advertised by title not less than five (5) days before the bill comes up for final consideration.

 

                     3. Every member of a committee shall attend upon the call of the Chair. Failure without good cause, of a committee member to attend three (3) consecutive meetings shall be a ground for removal of such member from the committee. In case of the Chair’s failure to call a committee meeting, or in case of his/her absence by reason of illness or other cause, the committee shall attend upon the call of the President.

 

                     4. A quorum for a committee hearing or meeting shall consist of a majority of all the members of the committee and a quorum must be present at any meeting at the time a vote is taken. If a quorum is not present after the scheduled time of a committee hearing or meeting, ex officio members of the committee may be counted for the purpose of determining the presence of the quorum.

 

                     5. Meetings of standing committees shall be held at such times as do not conflict with the meetings of other committees of Council, except upon approval of the President.

 

                     6. The chairperson (or in the Chair’s absence the acting chairperson) of the committee shall make reports in writing, and if called upon assign the reason for failure to report.

 

                     7. The recommendation of a committee that a bill be disapproved shall not affect its consideration by the Council but the word “DISAPPROVED” shall be written conspicuously above the title of the bill. Such bill may be placed on the calendar by a majority vote of all the members of the Council.

 

                     A committee may vote that a bill be “WITHDRAWN” from further consideration by the Council at the request of the sponsor.

 

                     8. When a committee has directed that a bill or resolution be reported to the Council, the chairperson shall report the same at the next stated meeting of the Council and in no event shall such report be delayed longer than two (2) stated meetings of the Council. If the chairperson fails to report the bill or resolution as directed within the two (2) stated meetings, a majority of the committee may direct the Chief Clerk in writing to furnish the committee with a copy of said bill or resolution duly certified by the Chief Clerk, which copy shall be reported to the Council in lieu of the original.

 

                     9. A committee may amend a bill, resolution or other matter committed to it, except that it shall not change its subject or purpose.

 

                     10. Every committee shall have a record of all proceedings before it, which record shall be open for examination by any member of the Council. Committee records shall be filed with the Chief Clerk at the end of each calendar year and shall be kept for a period of two (2) years thereafter.

 

                     11. No committee shall meet while Council is in session without leave of the Council.

 

                     12. If a committee shall unduly delay reporting any bill or resolution, the committee may be discharged from further consideration thereof by the vote of nine (9) members of the Council whereupon the bill shall be printed and placed on the calendar for action or referred to another committee or the Committee of the Whole, as Council by its vote shall determine.

 

                     13. Written notice of all committee hearings and meetings shall be sent by the Chief Clerk to every member of the Council and to the departments concerned therewith and to each member of the public or organization thereof that has filed a written request for such notice with the Chief Clerk.

 

                     14. In the course of any authorized inquiry or investigation the Council shall compel the attendance of witnesses and the production of documents and other evidence at any committee meeting in accordance with Article XVI, Section 8, of the Act of June 25, 1919, P.L. 581, 53 P.S. § 12528. Whenever a committee of Council has been authorized to conduct any inquiry or investigation, the Chair of the committee shall have power to issue subpoenas or other process as deemed necessary or appropriate to compel the attendance of witnesses and the production of documents to the full extent authorized under Section 2-401 of the Philadelphia Home Rule Charter. The President of the Council or the Committee Chairperson shall administer the oaths or affirmations to witnesses.

 

                     All inquiries and investigations conducted by a committee shall be open to the public except when executive sessions are required. A committee may adopt such rules and regulations as it deems necessary or desirable to effectuate its inquiries and investigations.

 

                     Any standing committee created under these Rules that is a re-creation of a standing committee (“predecessor committee”) created under the rules set forth in Resolution No. 120001 (as amended) shall have power to complete any inquiry or investigation that the predecessor committee had been authorized to undertake but had not completed, and shall have and may exercise any powers that had been delegated to such predecessor committee or its chairperson. Any subpoenas issued by a predecessor committee or its chairperson shall remain in full force and effect, and any actions taken to enforce any such subpoenas shall continue in effect.

 

                     Any special committee established in the immediately preceding term of Council is hereby deemed to continue in existence if the President determines that the inquiry or investigation that it was authorized to undertake was not completed before the end of that term. Any such committee shall have power to complete any such inquiry or investigation, and shall have and may exercise any powers that had been delegated to such committee or its chairperson in the preceding term. Any subpoenas issued by such a committee or its chairperson in the preceding term shall remain in full force and effect, and any actions taken to enforce any such subpoenas shall continue in effect.

 

                     15. Any witness appearing before any committee may be represented by counsel. Any person whose character shall have been impugned in the course of an inquiry or an investigation shall be given opportunity to appear with or without counsel, to present evidence, to cross-examine any person who may have impugned that person’s character, and to call their own witnesses. The committee, upon appropriate application, may issue its subpoena to compel the attendance of witnesses on behalf of such person.

 

                     16. If a matter is referred to a Joint Committee consisting of two or more committees (“constituent committees”), then the procedures set forth in this paragraph IV shall apply to the Joint Committee as if it were a single committee composed of all Councilmembers who are members of one or more of the constituent committees. If a Councilmember is a member of more than one constituent committee, such Councilmember shall only have a single vote on the Joint Committee, and shall only be considered a single member for purposes of the quorum of the Joint Committee. The Chair of the constituent committee listed first in the referral of a matter shall be the Chair of the Joint Committee during consideration of such matter, and the Chair(s) of the other constituent committee(s) shall be the Vice Chair(s) of the Joint Committee.

 

 

V. Order of Business

 

                     1. The order of business at all stated meetings of Council shall be as follows:

 

                                          a. Prayer by Chaplain.

 

                                          b. Reading, correction and approval of the Journal of the preceding meeting.

 

                                          c. Applications for leave of absence.

 

                                          d. Reading of communications.

 

                                          e. Introduction of bills and resolutions.

 

                                          f. Referrals to appropriate committees by the President of the Council.

 

                                          g. Reports from Committees.

 

                                          h. Special business, including confirmation of appointments required by law, elections by the Council, and any other business by vote of the Council.

 

                                          i. Bills on first reading.

 

                                          j. Public comment.

 

                                          k. Resolution consent agenda.

 

                                          l. Bill consent agenda.

 

                                          m. Bills on final passage recalled from the Mayor.

 

                                          n. Bills and resolutions on final passage (bills on the final passage postponed calendar may be called up under this order of business).

 

                                          o. Bills on second reading and final passage (bills on second reading and final passage postponed calendar may be called up under this order of business).

 

                                          p. Bills and resolutions on the suspension calendar. During this order of business, the only actions that may be taken are to move a bill or resolution from the suspension calendar to the final passage calendar for the next session of Council, or to recommit a bill or resolution.

 

                     2. When any bill is on final passage, votes shall be taken by ayes and nays, and the names of the members voting for and against the bill shall be entered in the Journal. Unless a different voting majority is required by law, no bill shall pass unless a majority of all the members of the Council shall be recorded as voting in its favor.

 

                     3. Unfinished business.

 

                     Any subject may by a majority vote of the Council be made a special order of business; and when the time fixed for its consideration arrives the President shall lay it before the Council. A similar vote shall be required to rescind or postpone a special order of business.

 

                     A motion for adjournment shall always be in order and shall be decided without debate, except that it shall not be received while the Council is voting on another question, or while a member is addressing the Council.

 

                      If the foregoing order of business is interrupted by an adjournment, the business of the next meeting shall proceed as above set forth, unless the majority of the Council present shall decide that it shall commence where interrupted.

 

 

VI. Introduction of Bills and Resolutions

 

                     1. Except as otherwise provided in the Philadelphia Home Rule Charter, every legislative act of the Council shall be by ordinance and shall begin with the words, “The Council of the City of Philadelphia hereby ordains.”

 

                     2. Every proposed ordinance shall be introduced by bill. Every ordinance except annual budget ordinances and general codifications and revisions of City ordinances, shall contain not more than one (1) subject which shall be clearly and adequately expressed in its title.

 

                     3. All bills shall be presented in typewritten form and shall be signed and dated by the member or members introducing same. When introduced “by request” the bill shall identify the names and addresses of the person or persons requesting the introduction of said bill.

 

                     All private interest bills shall be accompanied by a fact sheet stating the names and addresses for each owner or owners, developers or other persons seeking such legislation.

 

                     4. When introduced, bills and resolutions shall be presented to the Chief Clerk who shall read the title thereof aloud, and deliver them to the President for reference to appropriate committees; and thereafter said bills and resolutions shall be numbered by the Chief Clerk.

 

                     5. Resolutions are either “privileged” or “non-privileged.” Privileged resolutions shall consist only of resolutions authorizing one or more committees of Council to hold hearings, and resolutions of commendation, congratulations and condolence. After a privileged resolution has been introduced, it shall be placed on the final passage calendar for action on the day of introduction.

 

                     After a non-privileged resolution has been introduced, the resolution shall be placed on the final passage calendar for the next session of Council or referred by the President to an appropriate committee. If this rule is waived so as to permit consideration of a non-privileged resolution on the day of its introduction, then the resolution shall be placed on the final passage calendar for consideration later in the meeting.

 

                     All resolutions that will be considered on the day of their introduction (except resolutions of commendation, congratulations and condolence) shall be sent by the sponsor to every Councilperson, so as to be in the possession of members by at least 12:00 noon the day prior to the day of introduction into the Council.

 

                     All resolutions, when introduced, shall be printed for the use of the members and the public.

 

VII. Consideration of Bills

 

                     1. Every bill shall be read on two (2) separate days in open Council meetings. A bill reported from committee to Council shall not be given a first reading on the same day it is reported from committee, but shall be placed on the first reading calendar for the next meeting of Council; however, if a motion is carried to suspend this rule so as to permit the first reading of a bill on the same day it is reported from committee, and if the bill has been read as part of the committee report, then the reading of the committee report shall be deemed to be the first reading of the bill, and the bill shall be placed on the second reading calendar for the next meeting of Council.

 

                     2. When bills on first reading are in order, the President shall take up the calendar and shall direct the Chief Clerk to read the titles of such bills in the order in which they appear on the calendar. They shall be severally read without amendment or debate and journalized accordingly.

 

                     3. No bill shall be considered on the second reading and final passage calendar unless called up from the calendar by a member. When a bill is called up for second reading and final passage the President shall direct the Chief Clerk to read such bill. It shall be read and then be subject to amendment in any part. When amendments are proposed to a bill or resolution, the sponsor shall present a typewritten copy of each amendment and sufficient additional copies for distribution to the members and the press.

 

                     4. No bill shall be altered or amended during final passage as to change its original purpose. Amended bills shall be printed as amended for the use of the members of the Council and for the information of the public, and shall be placed on the Final Passage Calendar for the next meeting.

 

                     5. At any time after second reading and before final passage a bill may be recommitted or placed on the suspension calendar, or action thereon may be postponed by a majority vote of all the members of the Council.

 

                     6. When ready for vote on final passage the President shall announce as follows: “This bill having been read twice on two different days, the question now is shall the bill pass finally? The ayes and nays shall then be taken and the names of the Councilpersons voting for and against the bill shall be entered into the Journal of Proceedings. No bill shall pass unless a majority of all the members of the Council shall be recorded as voting in its favor, provided that any bill authorizing the City to acquire, convey or lease to a third party any interest in real estate that includes park or recreation land or facilities shall not pass unless two thirds of all the members of the Council shall be recorded as voting in its favor.

 

                     7. The following “consent agenda” procedure may also be used in the consideration of bills on the final passage calendar:

 

                                          a. At any session of Council, any member may make a motion that the Rules of Council be suspended so as to permit the use of a consent agenda to consider bills on Council’s final passage calendar. The motion shall specify which bills would be considered on the consent agenda. It is the intent of these Rules that only routine and non-controversial matters should be included on a consent agenda.

 

                                          b. If any member of Council expresses an objection to the use of the consent agenda, the motion shall be withdrawn without debate. If the motion to use a consent agenda passes, the consent agenda shall be considered immediately before Council’s consideration of bills on the regular second reading and final passage calendar.

 

                                          c. Before the bills on second reading and final passage are read, the Council President shall announce: “We will now consider today’s consent agenda. I will ask the Clerk to read the titles of all the bills on the consent agenda. After each title is read, any member may object to the inclusion of the bill on the consent agenda. Upon such an objection, and without debate, the bill will be immediately removed from the consent agenda and placed on our regular final passage calendar. The Clerk will now read the titles of the bills on the consent agenda.”

 

                                          d. The Clerk will then read the title of all bills on the consent agenda, with any member having the right to remove any bill from the consent agenda, as announced by the Council President. After all bills on the consent agenda have been read, the Council President shall announce: “These bills having been read on two different days, the question for each bill now is, shall the bill pass finally? The Clerk shall call the roll, and upon being called, each Councilmember shall vote aye on each of the bills, nay on each of the bills, or indicate those bills for which the member is voting aye and those bills for which the member is voting nay.”

 

                                          e. Following the Council President’s announcement, the Clerk shall call the roll. Each member shall announce his or her vote as “aye on each of the bills” or “nay on each of the bills,” or shall announce those bills for which the member votes aye and those bills for which the member is voting nay.

 

                                          f. Upon completion of the roll call, the Council President shall announce the results. If a majority of all the members vote in favor of all bills on the consent agenda, the Council President may simply announce that a majority of all the members of the Council having voted in the affirmative, the bills on the consent agenda are passed, provided that the Clerk shall record in the Journal the names of each member voting for and against each individual bill on the consent agenda.

 

                      8. Every bill shall be certified by the signature of the President, and attested by the Chief Clerk and shall be delivered to the Mayor for his/her approval within three (3) days after final passage of the bill.

 

                     

VIII. Introduction and Consideration of Resolutions, Petitions,

Memorials, Remonstrances and Communications

 

                     1. All matters which relate to the organization, the conduct of the affairs, and the Rules of the Council, and to inquiries and investigations by the Council, or other matters which require the approval solely of the Council, shall be submitted to the Council for appropriate action in the form of resolutions.

 

                     2. Members may present and the Council may receive petitions, memorials, remonstrances and communications.

 

                     3. The requirements of paragraph 3 of Rule VI relating to the introduction and consideration of bills shall apply to resolutions.

 

                     4. Except as otherwise required by law, resolutions may be adopted by a majority of all the members of the Council.

 

                     5. A resolution that is reported from committee shall not be considered on the same day it is reported from committee, but shall be placed on the final passage calendar for consideration at the next session of Council. A resolution on the final passage calendar may be moved to the suspension calendar by a majority vote of all the members of the Council.

 

                     6. Resolution Consent Agenda.

 

                                          a. At any session of Council, any member may make a motion that the Rules of Council be suspended so as to permit the use of a consent agenda to consider resolutions on Council’s final passage calendar. The motion shall specify which resolutions would be considered on the consent agenda.

 

                                          b. If any member of Council expresses an objection to the use of the resolution consent agenda, the motion shall be withdrawn without debate.

 

                                          c. When it is time to consider the resolution consent agenda, the Chief Clerk will read the titles of all the resolutions on the resolution consent agenda. After each title is read, any member may object to the inclusion of the resolution on the resolution consent agenda. Upon such an objection, and without debate, the resolution shall be removed from the consent agenda and shall instead be considered as part of that day’s final passage calendar.

                                          

                                          d. After the titles of all the resolutions have been read, the President shall recognize the Majority Leader for a motion to adopt each of the resolutions on the resolution consent agenda. If the motion is seconded, the President shall call for a voice vote on the motion, and if the motion passes, all resolutions on the resolution consent agenda shall be adopted.

 

 

IX. Reconsideration of Bills

 

1.                     If a bill fails to receive a majority vote of all members of Council, any two (2) members who voted against it may move the reconsideration of such bill at the next stated meeting following the meeting at which the bill was disapproved. If such motion shall be adopted, the bill shall be placed on the final passage calendar at the next stated meeting following the meeting at which the reconsideration motion was adopted.

 

X. Committee of the Whole

 

                     1. It shall at all times be in order, before the final passage of any bill, or resolution, to move its commitment to the Committee of the Whole. When a motion is carried to go into the Committee of the Whole, the President shall act as chairperson.

                     

                     2. Consideration of the annual Capital Program, Capital Budget, Operating Budget, and School Budget shall be by the Committee of the Whole.

 

 

XI. Rights of Members in Debate

 

                     1. Members speaking shall address the President, and when presenting a paper shall first state its import. Members shall not be interrupted when speaking except by a call to order by the President, or by a member through the President, or by a call for the previous question.

 

 

XII. Rules of Order, Privileged and Subsidiary Motions

 

                     1. When a question is under consideration, no motion shall be received, except for motions:

 

                                          a. to adjourn,

 

                                          b. to lay on the table,

 

                                          c. for the previous question, the effect of which is to end debate and have an immediate vote taken on the pending question(s),

                                          

                                          d. to postpone,

 

                                          e. to refer the matter to committee, and

 

                                          f. to amend.

 

                     These motions shall have preference in the order in which they are above mentioned, and the first three (3) shall be decided without debate. An indefinite postponement shall be equivalent to a rejection.

 

                     2. The motion for the previous question must be seconded by at least four members, and shall require the vote of a majority of all the members of the Council to sustain it. If the motion for the previous question is sustained, the question shall be upon pending amendments and the main question in their order, and all incidental questions arising after a motion shall be decided, whether on appeal or otherwise, without debate.

 

                     3. On a call of ayes and nays, the Chief Clerk shall read the names of the members and no member shall be permitted to change their vote after the member has voted, unless the member at the time, and before the result is announced, declares that the member voted under a misapprehension. Members who have not voted can have their names recorded at any time before the close of session. A member may submit in writing the member’s vote on any question, which may be placed in the Journal, if so requested by the member.

 

                     4. Every member present, when a question is put, shall vote on the same unless the member abstains because the member is personally interested, or unless excused from voting at the time the question is about to be put.

 

                     5. The ayes and nays on any question may be called by two (2) members.

 

                     6. Rules of parliamentary procedure comprised in Mason’s Manual of Legislative Procedure shall govern the Council in all cases to which they are applicable, and in which they are not inconsistent with the standing rules and orders of the Council.

 

 

XIII. Journal

 

                     1. The Chief Clerk shall keep a Journal, which shall be the official public record of the Council, and all proceedings of the Council shall be recorded therein.

 

                     2. Every motion shall be entered into the Journal together with the name of the member making it, unless subsequently withdrawn.

 

 

XIV. Suspension of Rules

 

                     1. Any rule of Council may be suspended by a majority vote of all the members of Council.

 

 

XV. Amendment of Rules

 

                     1. No rule may be altered, amended or rescinded except by a majority vote of all the members of the Council, after one (1) week’s written notice of such proposed action.

 

 

XVI. Public Comment

 

                     1. At each meeting of Council, opportunity shall be provided for residents and taxpayers to comment on bills and resolutions that are listed either on the final passage calendar or the second reading/final passage calendar for that meeting of Council. No comment shall be received with respect to any bill or resolution on the suspension calendar.

 

                     2. Each resident or taxpayer who wishes to provide public comment shall be limited to three (3) minutes, or such other time period as the President may announce. The President may place additional reasonable limitations on public comment to permit Council to conduct its meetings and to maintain order, including limiting repetitious comments.

 

                     3. Before providing comment, a resident or taxpayer shall state his or her name, address, and, if not a resident of the City, state that he or she is a Philadelphia taxpayer.

 

                     4. The Chief Clerk shall maintain a list of persons who have requested the opportunity to provide comment at the next scheduled meeting of Council. Any person may ask to be added to the list on the day of a Council session. Public comment shall be received in the order in which persons appear on the list. Once the list is exhausted, the President shall ask if any other person wishes to provide public comment, and if there is no response, the opportunity for public comment at that meeting shall be closed.

 

                     5. If in the President’s judgment there is not sufficient time at a meeting for residents and taxpayers to comment, the President may announce that the public comment period will be deferred to the next session of Council, provided that no action shall be taken on a bill or resolution unless there was an opportunity for public comment on that bill or resolution.

 

 

XVII. Suspension Calendar

 

                     1. No action shall be taken on any bill or resolution that has been placed on the suspension calendar, except for a motion to place the bill or resolution on the final passage calendar for the next session of Council, or a motion to recommit the bill or resolution.

 

 

XVIII. Councilmanic Redistricting

 

1. This rule addresses the transitional period between the time that Councilmanic district boundaries are redrawn pursuant to Section 2-102 of The Philadelphia Home Rule Charter and the time that Councilmembers elected to represent the revised districts first take office.

 

2. Once the Councilmanic district boundaries have been redrawn pursuant to Section 2-102, any area within an existing Councilmanic district that will fall in a different Councilmanic district when the next term of Council begins shall be the primary responsibility of the incumbent Councilmember who would represent that area if re-elected to serve in the next term. Matters covered by this rule include constituent services, assistance in zoning matters, recommendations concerning the expenditure of capital funds, recreation activities grants, and other decisions traditionally reserved for the District Councilmember in whose district an area lies.

 

End