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1/31/2013
KISS

There is an old saying that is helpful to us in many a context, which would be of some use to Borough Assembly members as they consider their meeting schedule.

The acronym is KISS which, roughly translated, stands for “Keep It Simple, ‘Sembly.”

The Assembly is pondering the idea of meeting every third week. Sounds pretty simple, unless you are a member of the public trying to figure out when in May, say, the Assembly will meet. Under the every-three-weeks scenario, the Assembly might meet late one month, early in another — the meetings would be all over the calendar.

For the purposes of the public — and even Assembly members’ planning — meeting on a given day of the month is helpful and, it could be argued, necessary.

Right now, the Assembly regularly meets on the first and third Mondays. One can look at a calendar any month and know whether on the Monday one is planning, say, an open house at a business, it will conflict with an Assembly meeting. If it’s on the first or third Monday, it usually does.

So if the Assembly doesn’t have enough work to keep itself busy two times a month, it would do well to choose a first, second, third or fourth Monday (or other day) of a month.

Alternatively, it could choose a certain date — the 5th of each month, say — although that designation would be fraught with scheduling peril, too. If the 5th is on a Sunday, then what? If it’s the first Thursday of a month, then the Assembly meeting is the same night as a regular City Council meeting (always on the first and third Thursdays).

Of course there are special meetings and special circumstances that change regular meeting dates from time to time. Everyone understands that.

What we won’t understand, or look kindly upon, will be having to figure out an astrological chart to find out when the Assembly can regularly be expected to meet. The public should be able to go to, or watch, the meetings, with as much ease as possible. The Assembly serves at the pleasure of the people; the people had best be able to find the Assembly.

Keep it simple, ‘Sembly.