Remote Meeting Protocols
The guidance below provides useful information for accessing FORA meetings remotely and establishing best practices for productive meetings. Links for the Board, Administrative Committee, Finance Committee, and Habitat Working Group will be posted on the FORA website and provided via email.
Board and Committee Members
Board and Committee Members should participate remotely from their homes. As per the Governor’s updated Executive Order, there is no longer a requirement to post agendas at or identify these locations. Agenda packages will be distributed as usual via email and made available on our website. Meeting Chair(s) will recognize individuals and unmute their device so that comments may be heard or will read comments if they are provided in writing only. Please click here for a complete list of protocols for our meetings.
FORA’s office will remain closed until further notice. Members of the public will be able to hear and see public meetings via phone, computer or smart device. Public comments will be accepted via email requests sent to firstname.lastname@example.org. Comments will be read by the clerk.
For All Participants:
- Please download Zoom application for your device and familiarize yourself with how to utilize this tool. There is no cost for using the application.
- Please mute all devices when not speaking during the meeting.
- Please make every effort to find a location with limited ambient noise.
We anticipate that this process will likely include some challenges and hope that all will bear with us as we navigate this process.
Remote Meeting Best Practices
Before the meeting:
- Download the Zoom meeting app ahead of time and practice using the video and microphone; contact FORA staff if you would like a practice session. (email@example.com) All participants are encouraged to join in by a device (computer, tablet or mobile phone) that has both video and audio capabilities.
- Familiarize yourself with the location of the mute button, the video on and off button, the “raise your hand” feature and the “chat” function ahead of time.
- Choose a location where you can be seen easily, without lighting behind it. Experiment with different locations to see which is the most professional- looking.
- Review the packet ahead of time. If possible, send any questions to the Executive Officer ahead of time so staff can provide that information in their presentation.
- Check your email the day beforehand for any written public comments that were received and distributed ahead of time.
- Take measures to minimize interruptions and distractions - try to use a room where you can close the door; inform other occupants of the household that you are going into a meeting; try to isolate yourself from pets, children or others who may be noisy.
- Dress appropriately.
- Plan to log into the meeting at least 10 minutes prior to the designated start time, to allow time in case you have difficulties.
During the meeting:
- Arrive on time. There will be a short adjustment period as all the technical issues are addressed, and it will be difficult to keep track of late arrivals.
- The Chair will open the meeting, then Clerk will conduct the roll call. This will be our opportunity to confirm that your audio works.
- If you are having technical difficulties, send a Chat message to our meeting administrator, Harry Tregenza. Otherwise, the chat feature will be disabled to assure that there are no side conversations, in compliance with the Brown Act.
- Late arrivals, if any, will be tracked by the Clerk as they arrive.
- During the meeting, you will be muted until you are recognized by the Chair.
- Use the ”raise your hand” feature when you want to talk, the Chair and Executive Director will keep track monitor it.
- The Chair will use the ”participants” function to see who has raised their hand, announce who has their hand up and recognize speakers before they talk. (i.e., I see Board members X, R and A all have their hands up let’s start with Board member A, then R and X.)
- Public comment will be called for by the Chair after Board member questions but before Board member discussion. Members of the Public should submit comments via email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
- To make a motion, raise your hand, and after being recognized by the chair you will be unmuted and can make the motion verbally, “I move that we...”. The Chair will restate the maker of the motion and repeat the motion.
- To second a motion, raise your hand, and after being recognized by the chair you will be unmuted and can make the second verbally, “I second the motion...”. The Chair will restate the seconder of the motion.
- All votes will be roll call votes. The Clerk will call the roll and state the results of the vote to the group.
- Agencies who usually give updates are encouraged to keep it brief and if appropriate provide a written summary that can be sent to the group ahead of time, so that the meeting can focus on discussion items.