How Legislation is Adopted

Council Committees 

The Council President, chosen by the nine members for a two-year term, assigns legislation to one of the Council's six standing Committees: Arts and Culture in the Center City; Finance; Business & Economic Development; Neighborhood & Community Development; Parks & Public Works; and Public Safety, Youth & Recreation. 

The primary function of these Committees is to review all proposed legislation and to recommend adoption, consideration or rejection by the entire Council, either as written or with amendments. Committees generally meet on the Thursday before each regular Council Meeting. Call (585) 428-7538 for specific times and dates of individual Committee meetings, or check the City's website at for information. The six Committees as of January 1, 2016 are as follows:  

Art and Culture in the Center City 

  • Elaine M. Spaull (Chair)  
  • Adam C. McFadden   
  • Jacklyn Ortiz  


  •  Carolee A. Conklin  (Chair)  
  •  Molly Clifford  
  •  Adam C. McFadden

Business & Economic Development 

  • Dana K. Miller (Chair)
  • Michael A. Patterson
  • Elanine M. Spaull

Neighborhood & Community Development 

  • Jacklyn Ortiz (Chair)  
  • Molly Clifford 
  • Carolee A. Conklin   

Parks & Public Works   

  • Matt Haag (Chair)  
  • Michael A. Patterson  
  • Elaine M. Spaull  

  Public Safety, Youth & Recreation 

  •  Adam C. McFadden (Chair)  
  •  Molly Clifford 
  • Matt Haag 

Regular Council Meetings - Your Voice Counts   

City Council, following a calendar created each year, meets on certain Tuesday evenings. The "Speak to Council" session, at which citizens can address Council on any issue, starts at 6:30 p.m. In order to "Speak to Council" about an issue on a particular Council Meeting agenda, or to suggest an issue for a future Meeting, you must call 428-7421 before 5:30 p.m. of the Meeting day. You will need to provide your name, address, telephone number, the organization you are representing (if any), and the topic you plan to speak about.   

The Council Meeting itself begins at 7:30 p.m. After the formal public hearings are concluded, each Committee presents to the entire Council the legislation it has considered along with its recommendations. Council then votes on each individual piece of proposed legislation, including any amendments.  

 After Council votes to adopt legislation, it is sent to the Mayor for signature. Enacted legislation is then filed with the City Clerk and printed in the annual "Proceedings of the Council of the City of Rochester".  

 All meetings of the Rochester City Council and its Committees are open to the public. They are held in Council Chambers, Room 302A, in City Hall, 30 Church Street, at the corner of North Fitzhugh Street. Assistive devices for the hearing impaired are available.