The nine-member board of the Whatcom Transportation Authority on Thursday, Sept. 20, narrowly approved reducing the size of its executive committee from seven board members to three.
The committee reviews the transit agency's business one week before the full board and makes recommendations to the board.
The 5-4 decision came after debate over whether the change would allow for more "robust" debate at full board meetings or discourage public participation, which now largely takes place at the executive committee meetings.
"I would really like to see the board ... have that robust discussion here," board member and Bellingham Mayor Kelli Linville said at Thursday's meeting.
The change goes into effect Jan. 1, 2013. The committee will be comprised of one representative from Bellingham, one from county government and one from the smaller cities.