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(a) If the matter before the commission on human relations cannot be resolved by the conciliation conference panel, it shall be set down for public hearing. The parties shall be served notice of the time and place of a public hearing by personal service or registered or certified mail at least ten days prior thereto. The notice shall include a statement informing the parties of their right to transfer the matter to the circuit court as provided in § 98.034(b). The public hearing shall be conducted by a public hearing panel which shall be composed of three commissioners, none of whom shall have been involved in the investigation, determination of probable cause or conciliation.
(b) The public hearing panel shall have authority to conduct prehearing conferences, to subpoena witnesses to appear, testify and produce records, books, papers and other documents, to administer oaths, to take testimony, to receive evidence, to examine and cross examine witnesses and issue orders authorized by this chapter.
(c) Both complainant and respondent shall appear in person at the hearing and may be represented by counsel. Both may, in accordance with the order of procedures as may be determined by the public hearing panel, present evidence, call witnesses and present arguments bearing upon the facts alleged in the complaint.
(d) All witnesses, including complainant and respondent, may be examined and cross examined. The public hearing panel shall not be bound by the strict rules of evidence applicable to judicial proceedings, but its findings must be based upon competent evidence. Each witness at the hearing shall testify under oath. A stenographic record shall be made of the proceedings or an electronic device may be used. In a judicial review, the commission may, upon request, furnish the complainant and respondent each with a copy of the transcript of the hearing without charge.
(1957 Rev. Ords., § 2.1807; 1972 Code, § 13-33; 1992 Code, § 21.5-33) (Ord. 2700, passed 8-17-1970; Ord. 52-73, passed 6-25-1973; Ord. 55-76, passed 6-21-1976; Ord. 22-81, passed 3-16-1980; Ord. 51-91, passed 6-10-1991)