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Participating in Meetings FAQs

Who can speak at a Committee or Council Meeting?

Committee Meeting 

You may speak if you have an interest in the particular matter or have someone talk on your behalf. You can also speak as a representative of a local community organisation or authority.

Council Meeting 

You may speak if you are a resident or a ratepayer of the City of Ryde or you can have someone else talk on your behalf. You can also speak as a representative of a local community organisation or authority.

Are there any restrictions on what I can speak about?

Committee Meeting 

At a Committee Meeting, you may speak on any matter listed on the agenda for that meeting, except for 'confidential' matters under the Local Government Act eg. some legal matters, tenders, personnel matters – check with the staff if you are not sure.

No person may speak more than once at a committee meeting, except where more than one item deals directly with the person's property or the person is representing more than one property owner.

Council Meeting 

You may speak on any Council related matter whether it is listed on the agenda or not, except for:

  • Matters relating to the determination of a Development Application (including any alleged breaches of the Environmental Planning & Assessment Act)
  • 'confidential' matters under the Local Government Act eg. some legal matters, tenders, personnel matters – check with staff if you’re not sure.
  • Matters that have been already listed and considered by the Works and Community Committee and Planning and Environment Committee; and have then been referred to Council for determination under delegated authority.

To be fair to everyone, you can only speak once at a meeting and you cannot speak on the same subject more than once in a 3 month period.

You may not make insulting or defamatory statements, and you should take care when discussing other people’s personal information. Also, a member of the public may be expelled from a meeting for engaging in disorderly conduct.

Are there any rules for speaking at the meeting?

You will be required to have completed a Request to Address Council or Committee Meeting Online Form or PDF Form(PDF, 109KB) prior to speaking. Please read the form and complete all sections.

Your request to address the Meeting must be received by 12 noon on the day of the meeting. Late applications to address the meeting will NOT be accepted.

Committee Meeting

As a general rule each speaker is given 5 minutes (a maximum of 15 minutes for a group) or as previously arranged with Council's Governance Unit.

  • You can only speak on the matter when invited to join the meeting by the Chairperson.
  • The order of speakers is determined by the Chairperson.
  • You may use and distribute printed information, sketches, etc.
  • An audiovisual presentation can be accommodated by prior arrangement with Council's Governance Unit.
Council Meeting

As a general rule:

  • 30 minutes is allocated at the beginning of the meeting for items listed on the agenda.
  • 15 minutes is allocated at the end of the meeting for items not listed on the agenda.
  • Each speaker has three minutes – there is a warning bell after two minutes. For fairness to everyone, no extensions of time are given and there is no question and answer period.
  • You may use and distribute printed information, sketches etc. but we cannot accommodate audiovisual equipment.
  • The order of speakers is allocated on a first-come first-served basis. To be fair to everyone, you can only speak once at a meeting and you can't speak on the same subject more than once in a 3 month period.

How do I arrange to speak at a meeting?

Committee Meeting

Complete the Request to Address Council or Committee Meeting Online Form or PDF Form(PDF, 109KB) and return to the Governance Unit by 12 noon on the day of the meeting.

Council Meeting 

Complete the Request to Address Council or Committee Meeting Online Form or PDF Form(PDF, 109KB) and return to the Governance Unit by 12 noon on the day of the meeting.

You can do this up to 14 days in advance of the meeting.  Additional forms may be obtained from the Council's Customer Service Centre, Ryde City Libraries, or phone Council's Governance Unit on 9952 8222.

Last updated on 12 December 2016