Consulting commissions are designed to provide a chance for experts to give their opinion and thus advise the city council about specific projects and council level decisions. There are 14 consulting commissions, covering subjects ranging from youth policy to protection of nature and the environment.
They were introduced because during the formal meetings of the city council, only members of the council or of the college of aldermen are allowed to voice their opinion. During the consulting commissions meetings, experts from city departments and other internal advisers directly involved with the project under discussion can be called upon to provide explanations, offer their opinion and even ask questions of the commission. A secretary, usually from a competent city department, coordinates the commission.
The opinion of the commission is then delivered during the council meeting by its president (member of the council), allowing the council to have a better understanding of the topic at hand.