Thursday, April 20, 2006

Council Meetings Online? Why Not?

Here's a novel idea. Why can't Town Council and Board of Ed meetings be available online for downloading? Does any township in NJ do it? We found this California town in the news yesterday with a population about the same size as Bloomfield and an income similar to Montclair. Their council chambers appear much like Montclair's except you can hear every word. Another online plus is that you can click to the section of the agenda that interests you the most.

Check out the speaker in the public comments section. You may recognize him.

1 comment:

  1. Anonymous7:07 PM

    The only downside to this would be the additional expense for recording equipment, and to have someone run the equipment and then post it on the web, and with strained municipal budgets and astronomical taxes, that might be a tough nut to crack, but the idea is well taken as a move towards more open government. The fragmented nature of New Jersey local goverment can really be quite an impediment to transparency.

    Frankly, I would be happy if we adopted a law in this state requiring all municipalities to post meeting agendas, minutes, and all public notices on a municipal website in a timely manner. That should not be expensive at all, because these items are already being produced on paper if not electronically. If anything, posting public notices online would save the cost of running them in the classified sections of the obscure local weekly papers in which they usually appear now. There is no reason in 2006 that a resident of any NJ municipality should not be able to obtain any publically available information online.