I firmly believe in open and transparent government. I also feel like recording meetings makes it more convenient for people to participate even if they aren't able to attend a meeting. Recorded meeting are also useful for research. For those reasons, I presented a proposal at the end of the August 23rd City Council meeting during the round table discussion asking for more meetings to be video recorded.
I feel like we have made strides forward in transparency by video recording our regular City Council meetings and Planning & Zoning meetings. Now I’m proposing that we make it a practice to routinely record Special and Emergency meetings of the Council.
These meetings are very important to have available on video due to many factors:
People may not be aware of them and miss out on going because they are generally last-minute.
The meetings are perhaps at different times. Last week was at 3pm and some other times they’ve been at 10am.
It’s more likely that at one of these meetings an important decision will be made that needs to be on the record.
For example, last week on August 16 we had a special meeting where we decided to put a levy on the ballot that would increase Hayden property taxes by about 32%. I’ve been hearing from people who are not happy that they missed that meeting. They would have loved to have come. But this meeting was not video recorded. It was only audio recorded.
Since, according to the City Manager, there is a cost of about $200 to $500 involved in recording a meeting, I proposed that when we want to schedule a special or emergency meeting that it’s with the knowledge that there is expense involved and count the cost first. We don’t do that many so it shouldn’t be a problem.
In summary, I proposed that we make it a practice to routinely record Special and Emergency meetings of the Council as well as regular meetings and Planning & Zoning meetings.
Note: If you would like to listen to the audio recording of the August 16 meeting, you can request it by writing the the city clerk- email@example.com There may be a small fee to cover the cost of a thumb drive to put it on.