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Frequently asked questions
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The duties of the Clerk include:
- Administration of City elections.
- Technical support of the City Council.
- Maintenance of meetings and agenda items as required by applicable statutes.
- Maintenance and administration of all official records of the City, the custody of which is not provided for in the Charter or by ordinances of the City, including records of all proceedings of the Council (minutes) and its ordinances and resolutions.
- Administration of the City Clerk's pages on the City's Website.
- Administration of a Citywide Records Management Program to include retention schedules, inactive records storage, vital records, micrographics, archives, and other components as provided for by ordinance or resolution or the Council.
- Any other duties as may be established by ordinance or a resolution of the Council.
The City Charter established the Council-Manager form of government in Petaluma. Under this system, members of the City Council are elected at large and the Mayor, who is also elected at large, presides over the Council, but has no veto power. Mayor and Council select a City Manager, who attends Council meetings, makes recommendations, presents the annual budget to the Council and participates in discussion, but does not vote. The City Attorney, also appointed by the Council, is the City's chief legal advisor. The City Clerk, appointed by Council, also serves as Clerk to the Council.
You may access the Council Agenda and Staff Reports online for upcoming City Council meetings. This information is posted six days prior to the next regularly scheduled Council meeting. The City Clerk's staff can answer questions about upcoming Council meetings. You can reach them by calling 707.778.4360. Free copies of the agenda are also available from the Office of the City Clerk. Information can also be obtained from the City Manager's Office by calling 707.778.4345.
Additionally, copies of the agenda and meeting materials are available for public review at the following locations:
- Petaluma Senior Center, 211 Novak Drive, Petaluma
- Petaluma Community Center, 320 North McDowell Boulevard, Petaluma
- Council Chambers, City Hall, 11 English Street, Petaluma
- City Clerk's Office, City Hall, 11 English Street, Petaluma
- City Manager's Office, City Hall, 11 English Street, Petaluma
The City Council meets regularly on the first and third Mondays of each month. Closed Session, if any, is generally scheduled for 6:00 p.m. Open Session is held at 7:00 p.m. The meetings are held at City Hall, 11 English Street, in the Council Chambers.
Members of the public may speak in front of the City Council during Public Comment. For items not on the agenda, General Public Comment takes place at the beginning of Open Session. Public Comment on Agendized Items takes place before each item on the agenda. Speakers are limited to 3 minutes each.
Members who wish to speak must fill out a Speaker Card. These forms are available in the rear of the Council Chambers. They are to be submitted to the City Clerk at the meeting.
Individuals wishing to make an audio/video presentation using computer equipment in the Council Chambers should read the Instructions for Making Presentations During Public Comment page.
By State law, Closed Session meetings are not open to the public. Members of the public may address the City Council, under Public Comment, prior to a Closed Session.
The City's new Records and Document Search program allows you to search, browse, and read important documents - without having to come to City Hall!
We continued to add more records as time allows. As of March 2014, the following are available:
- City ordinances: 1955 - Present
- City Council resolutions: 1961-63, 1966, 1972 - Present
- City Council minutes: 1911 - Present
Please be patient. Due to budget constraints, our license is limited and does not allow multiple users to access the system simultanously. If the system is busy, please try again later.
You should know that we can only provide limited assistance. For further information, contact the City Clerk's office at the above email or telephone number.
To enter a records and document search, click below: City of Petaluma - Document Management System
Call us at 707.778.4360 or come to the City Clerk's Office to obtain copies of other ordinances or resolutions in which you are interested. Copies are $.15 per page or the direct cost of duplication.
Council meetings are videotaped and televised the same day live on the Petaluma Community Access Government Channel 28. All meetings are recorded.
DVDs of the Council meetings are available from PCA or from the City Clerk's office. Cost will vary depending on the specific request. Meetings since February 2005 may be viewed on-line. Contact the Office of the City Clerk at 707.778.4360 for more information.
Legislative matters are often discussed by a Citizen Board, Commission or Committee prior to placement on the City Council Agenda. For more information about the members of these committees and their meeting times, follow the navigation buttons at the top of this page.
Claire Cooper, CMC
11 English Street
Petaluma, CA 94952
8:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m. Mon-Thurs