A man identified as Eric Brandt video records the Aurora City Council Feb. 4, 2019 as he makes comments to the council. He and two other unidentified men made a variety of profane and vulgar comments to the city council as part of a “First Amendment” protest, which Brandt has performed before in Brush, Colorado. PHOTO BY KARA MASON, SENTINEL COLORADO

AURORA | Aurora City Council meetings, which now regularly stretch into the early morning of the next day, could see changes if city lawmakers approve a new meeting structure Monday night. 

The proposal would establish a regular public forum in place of the current “public invited to be heard” portion of the agenda, which occurs before every city council business begins. In recent meetings, public invited to be heard has stretched on for hours, forcing the remainder of the meeting to as late as 2 a.m.

Staff estimate that with this model meetings and study sessions would last no longer than three-and-a-half hours. 

Under the proposed system, backed by Councilwoman Nicole Johnston, a televised public listening forum would begin at 6 p.m. and include 15 minutes for council members to address comments made. 

The regular meeting would then start at 7:30 p.m. As is in place now, a public comment section would be available at the end of the meeting.

Denver operates on a similar model to the new proposal in Aurora. Two times each month the city hosts a 30-minute public comment section. Each speaker gets three minutes to speak on any topic that is not scheduled for a public hearing. 

— KARA MASON, Staff Writer