Public Comment Guide
Councilmembers welcome public engagement in a variety of ways: over the phone, in writing, and in person through conversations at meetings and public events, among others. In addition to these, Seattle City Council Rules and Policies define an opportunity for you to provide formal public comment at City Council meetings.
Public Comment at City Council meetings can be presented in one of two ways, depending on the purpose of the meeting:
Public comment is dedicated time of up to 20 minutes for the public to speak to items listed on the meeting’s agenda, and each speaker may be provided up to two minutes to speak. If allowed by the committee chair, a City Council meeting may accept public comment on other topics, in addition to those on the Agenda.
Public hearing is a separate public comment opportunity on a specific subject. Certain types of Council actions require a public hearing.
City Council meeting agendas and notices are located outside the Council Chamber doors and online at http://www.seattle.gov/council/.
Signing up to speak
Speakers are requested to sign up on the public comment sign-up sheet located inside the Council Chamber at least 15 minutes prior to each City Council meeting. Please review the speaker notice and complete the requested information.
The Committee Chair will open public comment by announcing the allotted time provided for the comment period and for individual speakers. Preparing speaking points in advance can be helpful.
Speaker names are called in numerical order. Please give your name and identify the agenda item you will be addressing.
Speakers should be attentive to the time allotted out of respect for others. This maximizes the number of speakers able to participate.
Written comments are also accepted and emails may be sent to an individual Councilmember or to all Councilmembers at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Public Comment Exceptions
Council Briefing Meetings, Special Full Council Meetings and Quasi-Judicial Proceedings
City Council Rules do not allow for public comment at Special Full Council and Council Briefing meetings.
City Council Rules prohibit public comment on proposals subject to quasi-judicial proceedings.
Requests for Accommodations
City Hall and the City Council Chamber are ADA accessible. In addition, City Council meetings in City Hall offer OnWave FM hearing assistance (ALS) with a personal listening device. This device is available by contacting City staff prior or at the beginning of the meeting.
American Sign Language (ASL) interpreter assistance or other translation services can be provided upon request. Please contact the City Clerk’s Office at least two business days in advance of the meeting.
Print communication or other accommodations may be provided by contacting the City Clerk's Office at 206-684-8888 or at email@example.com. Please allow at least two business days advance notice for staff to prepare for your needs.
As a courtesy to others, please silence your phone and refrain from distracting or disruptive conduct.
The City Rules of Conduct regarding City Buildings and Premises are available at the City Hall lobby security desk, second floor reception, and at the City Clerk's Office on the third floor.