Citizen participation is vital to a democratic government. The City of Orlando recognizes volunteers’ unique contributions and encourages involvement in the policy-making process through service as an advisory board member. Most City Boards are created by ordinance to provide advice and recommendations to City Council on diverse matters of public concern. Existing boards include zoning, municipal planning, housing codes, downtown development, the park system, public art, historic preservation, building and fire codes and many more.
Requirements for Board Membership
Board members should have the expertise necessary to accomplish the board’s objective; a reputation for integrity and community service interest and experience in board service is desired. All boards, unless otherwise noted, are compromised of a majority of City of Orlando residents. Some boards require financial disclosure. Persons appointed to these boards must file a “Form 1 – Limited Financial Disclosure” with the Supervisor of Elections in the county of their permanent residence within 30 days of appointment.
Orlando City Code Section 2.121 states: “Citizen board members should attend all meetings of their board or commission. Should a citizen member’s absences exceed twenty-five percent (25%) of the regular board meetings scheduled by the board in the fiscal year, that member’s board or commission appointment is terminated; provided, however, that no such appointment shall be automatically terminated if that citizen member has only missed a single meeting during that fiscal year. For the purposes of this section, a board or commission member shall be considered absent if they are not present for at least seventy-five percent (75%) of a scheduled meeting. Any changes to the annual meeting schedule shall be voted on by that board members in advance except in cases of an emergency.”
To review the City Code provision related to Citizen Advisory Boards in its entirety, click here.
All applications for appointment to a Citizen Advisory Board are reviewed by the Nominating Board. References may be contacted and prospective appointees may be interviewed. Recommendations are forwarded to the Mayor for appointment and/or reappointment subject to confirmation by City Council.
Dual Office Holding
The Florida Constitution, in Section 5(a) of Article II, prohibits simultaneous “dual office holding.” Service on most City of Orlando boards constitutes the holding of an “office” under Florida law. If you accept an appointment to a City board, you may have to resign from any other board, commission or authority to which you were appointed by the City of Orlando or by another governmental agency.