Tod Hallman was re-elected as Chair of the West Hollywood Public Safety Commission and Robert Satzman was elected as Vice Chair at a regular Public Safety Commission meeting on Monday, July 10, 2023.
City Clerk Melissa Crowder informed the Commission that none of the commissioners qualified to be Chair in accordance to West Hollywood Commission bylaws, which state that a sitting Chair cannot run for re-election and to be Chair a commissioner must serve in the commission for at least six months.
City Clerk Melissa Crowder said there were two separate things that the commission would need to decide that evening. “There is an eligibility requirement to be elected as chair and that is that you have served on the commission for six months,” she said. “Currently, the only person on the commission who has served over six months is Chair Hallman. So if it is the Commission’s will, the Commission could make a vote to suspend the rule that a chair could only serve for one year to allow for Chair Hallman to be renominated.”
She added that the commission could also waive the eligibility requirement. “That would have to be the will of the commission by a vote, so we’d need a motion, a second, and a vote on either of those two things, but it would be the will of the Commission, however you want to proceed. And I would conduct the motion and vote based on that.”
Commissioner George Nickle suggested the vote be open to any of the commissioners. “I certainly think it’s up to my fellow Commissioners to make a decision that we should proceed with the election as the bylaws propose,” he said. “I appreciate chair Hallman’s willingness to step up and serve for a second term if he is willing to do that, but the bylaws accommodate the situation. So I’d like to see if maybe we can just move forward and open it up to everyone.”
Commissioner Saltzman made a motion to waive the bylaw that the Chair could only serve a one-year term, making the current Chair eligible for nomination.
Commissioner Adam Eramian voted nay, but he retracted his vote and changed it to a yes when it was made clear that he was voting in favor of allowing the current chair to be re-elected. “I think that a chair should have the experience, and none of us here have been serving for more than six months,” he said. “I misunderstood my vote so I’d like to retract that and change it to aye.”
Commissioner Brandon Blau made another motion to waive the rule for six month eligibility of Chair of the Commission and open it to everyone should they want to elect themselves, but no one seconded the motion, so the motion failed.
Commissioner Aramian nominated Chair Hallman for a second term, which was seconded by Commissioner Saltzman. Chair Hallman was unanimously re-elected by the commission for another term as Chair.
The City Clerk informed the Commissioner that the same bylaws do not apply for a Vice-Chair election. The seat was open to the entire body.
Chair Hallman elected Commissioner Saltzman as Vice Chair, which was seconded by Commissioner Aramian. The Commission unanimously elected Commissioner Saltzman as Vice-Chair.
The Public Safety Commission was created on September 18, 1989 and is comprised of five (5) members, appointed by individual Councilmembers, and two (2) members appointed by the Council as a whole (at-large). Each member of the Commission serves a two-year term commencing March 1st following a general municipal election. Members must be residents of the City and shall not be officers or employees of the City. The Commission meets no more than once monthly.
The Public Safety Commission evaluates and recommends mechanisms involving public safety issues, assists the City Manager’s office and City Council in strengthening community response to emergencies, evaluates and make recommendations to City Council regarding neighborhood livability and domestic violence prevention.