Board of Commissioners Calendar

How to understand the Commissioner’s Calendar

Any meeting attended by two or more Commissioners and where Board decisions are made is a public meeting and must be publicly noticed as such in advance in the news outlet of record, the Gazette-Times (this now appears on the G-T online events calendar). Public meetings are also noticed on the County website. The meeting agenda must also be published in advance, and will tell you if public comment is an agenda item. (Please note: the Chair reserves the right to change the agenda during the meeting.) Any public hearing during a Board Meeting will also include a time for public comment specifically on that issue.

See the Board of Commissioners Calendar for the list of past and upcoming meetings.

The regular Board meetings usually take place on the first, third, and fourth Tuesdays of the month (with some exceptions due to holidays or Commissioner travel). The first and third Tuesday meetings usually include public comment on the agenda. The fourth Tuesday meeting is referred to as Information Sharing, and is often where staff or outside groups present longer reports and informational presentations. Information Sharing does not usually include public comment.

All of the Tuesday Board Meetings can be attended in person, by phone, or virtually. Those meetings are currently livestreamed on Facebook, and video recordings are available on YouTube after the meeting, usually later the same day. An audio recording link is usually posted to the County website page for that meeting within a few business days.

Facebook livestream link (requires a Facebook account)
Board of Commissioners meeting videos on YouTube (no account or sign in required): 

The Board meeting on the second Tuesday of the month is referred to as Goal Setting. It is also a public meeting, but does not usually include public comment, and is often where the Commissioners get more into the details of County operations. This one is not livestreamed, but the public can attend in person, by phone, or virtually.

The other meetings, such as the Board meetings with department heads, are also open to the public but do not usually have a public comment period. There is usually an audio recording but not a livestream or video recording. I am not the minutes recorder for those meetings, but I can get you in touch with the other recorder if need be.

The one exception about Board Meetings being public is when an Executive Session is held. These involve only the Board and individuals that the Board has invited, including a minutes recorder. There is no audio or video recording. Executive Sessions can only cover a short list of topics specified in Oregon State law. The Board may not make formal votes/decisions during a closed session; votes must always be public.

Meeting Packets

In addition to the agenda, most meetings have a packet of documents which the Board will consider before the meeting. This includes an overview of each topic, a suggested motion, presentations, supporting documents, and Board legal documents such as ordinances, resolutions, orders, etc. The packet for the Tuesday Board Meetings is typically compiled and posted on the County website meeting page by 5:00 pm on the Friday before. At times, there will be late additions or corrections, and an updated packet will be posted after that deadline.

Any document that is referred to during a Board Meeting but was not part of the published packet is called an exhibit. The minutes taker acquires a paper or digital copy of all exhibits and ensures they are added to the archive and referenced in the minutes.

Once draft minutes have been taken during the meeting, staff edit them into a coherent summary. The minutes are then added to another meeting packet and approved at a Board Meeting, usually the first or third Tuesday meetings.

After the minutes are approved, one of the Board’s administrative assistants creates an archive version with the minutes, agenda, packet, signed legal documents, and exhibits. This is posted to the County website meeting page. Minutes from meetings older than 2022 can be had by request (541-766-6800).

If you need minutes or other information from a meeting where those items have not been posted online, please feel free to contact one of the Board’s admin assistants.

Here’s what it all boils down to in terms of opportunities for public comment:

  1. Check the County meetings page for a list of meetings and links to the agendas. The agenda will tell you if a public comment period is scheduled.
  2. The most regular opportunities to make general public comment are at the first and third Tuesday Board Meetings. Comment does not necessarily have to relate to a specific agenda item at that meeting.
  3. If you have written comment that you would like the Board to consider in advance of the meeting, for best results, please mail or email it to Amanda Makepeace Amanda.makepeace@bentoncountyor.gov no later than 5:00 p.m. the Friday before a Tuesday Board Meeting. Postal mailing address: P.O. Box 3020, Corvallis, OR 97339-3020.
  4. You can still submit written comment during the meeting by email to Erika Milo Erika.milo@bentoncountyor.gov and/or on paper (if possible, please include copies for each Commissioner, the County Administrator, and the minutes recorder). The submission will be noted in the minutes as an exhibit and archived with the meeting documents.
  5. You can offer verbal comment at the meeting whether or not it is also submitted in writing. Verbal comment can be made in person, by phone, or virtually. Verbal comment will be recorded in the audio and/or video recording and summarized in the minutes.
  6. You are also welcome to provide comment to the Board or individual Commissioners at any time by phone (main line 541-766-6800), mail (PO Box above), or email (bocinfo@bentoncountyor.gov is the general Board’s Office email). Staff will ensure it is routed to the Board, but it will not be included in a meeting record unless you request that specifically.