The Bremerton City Council’s May 30 meeting was canceled for a lack of discussion items.

The Bremerton City Council’s May 30 meeting was canceled for a lack of discussion items.

This week’s meeting marked the city’s third “fifth Wednesday” meeting of the year. The first was used for a Finance 101 workshop while the second entailed a detailed briefing on the court system.

“This third one, we didn’t have enough business items for (councilors) to come in,” said Mayor Patty Lent. “Six of nine are still employed and it isn’t as easy for them to come in for all these committees and meetings. There used to be a lot more retirees on the council.”

City Council President Jim McDonald said that canceling the meeting wasn’t a tough decision.

“We’re set up to do four meetings a month, the first and third Wednesdays are business meetings and the second and fourth are council study sessions,” McDonald said. “Occasionally you get this weird month where you get this fifth meeting. Well, what do you do? Occasionally we’ve used them. In this case we didn’t have a lot of items scheduled so we said, ‘Okay, let’s go ahead and cancel the meeting.’”

Both McDonald and Lent noted that as is the case with the council’s regular study sessions, no public comment is taken at fifth Wednesday meetings. Therefore, government transparency and openness wasn’t affected by the cancellation.

When asked about this week’s cancellation, Councilman Greg Wheeler said that, “I think we’ve got everything covered at this point,” but noted that future fifth Wednesday meetings will likely be utilized by the council.

“I don’t foresee this happening again,” Wheeler said. “I foresee these fifth Wednesdays being used for updates from the staff to the council as to how they are meeting our goals and policies. I foresee our fifth Wednesdays being busy.”

Wheeler also talked about this year’s two prior fifth Wednesday meetings that included background workshops.

“Those are great, especially for our new council members,” he said. “They also fall under the policy discussions that we need to have and are very informative.”

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