Riders' Advisory Council By-laws and Codes

The Riders Advisory Council (RAC) exists to actively seek input from a broad range of riders and organizations with an expressed interest in public transit on operational and budgetary issues that affect Metrorail, Metrobus, and MetroAccess; advise the WMATA Board of Directors (Board) on ways to resolve such issues in order to improve Metrorail, Metrobus and MetroAccess services; advocate for riders to receive timely responses from WMATA regarding their inquiries; and recommend possible solutions to the Board and staff, based on public input, so that WMATA can effectively address the diverse needs of the riding public.

Procedures for Public Participation

The public will have three opportunities for participation in the monthly meetings of the RAC:

1. During the public comment period

This period will be used for the public to address any issues not on the Agenda. Generally, each person will be allowed up to two minutes for his/her comments. Each person who wishes to speak will identify him/herself by name and organization. Written summaries of oral statements will also be accepted by the Chair.

The Chair will assign any action items for follow up to a RAC member RAC Committee or Workgroup or to the Staff Coordinator.

The Chair has the discretion to manage the timeframe for public comment. This can be done by extending the Public Comment period, extending the time of the overall meeting, deferring comments to later on the Meeting Agenda, etc.

2. During the remainder of the meeting

The public may comment on any agenda item, excluding administrative agenda items. Administrative agenda items include the Agenda, Minutes, Scheduling and Adjournment of Meeting(s).

Each person who wishes to speak will identify him/herself by name and organization. Generally, the public will be invited to comment after any presentation and before RAC members comment on the presentation. The specific timing of public comment during an individual agenda item remains at the discretion of the Chair and may be adapted as warranted for the discussion at hand to provide public feedback before, during, and/or after RAC discussions as appropriate.

The Chair will determine time limits for each public comment period on each agenda item based on the number of people wishing to speak and the overall timeframe of the meeting. In order to manage the timeframes of the meeting, the Chair may ask for a show of hands to determine how much time needs to be added to each agenda items. The Chair has the discretion to manage the timeframe for public comment on each agenda item. This can be done by extending the time for the agenda item, extending the time of the overall meeting, deferring comments to later on the Meeting Agenda, etc.

3. Via E-Mail

The public may comment on agenda items via e-mail in response to the posting of the RAC agenda on the WMATA website — usually by close of business (5 p.m.) Fridays before the Wednesday meeting on the first of the month. Each person who comments via e-mail will identify him/herself by name and organization. Comments received by Tuesday at noon will be sent to RAC members and to WMATA staff to be addressed if/as time permits. All comments received via e-mail will be made part of the official record of the RAC; e.g., as a handout to RAC members and the public at the monthly meetings.

The RAC Leadership Team will use a consent agenda on Administrative Items in order to streamline its meetings to allow for more time for public comments.

All participants in the public comment portion of the meeting will adhere to the same standards of conduct outlined in Section IV.A.3 of the RAC Bylaws. Specifically, speakers will refrain from disruptive behavior which includes use of slurs, derogatory comments, or any other conduct, whether physical, verbal or written directed at another person or based upon another person's race, color, origin, sex, religion, sexual orientation, disability, or age.

The RAC Leadership Team will solicit input from RAC members and from the general public and present recommendations for modification to these procedures after three months.


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