Councillor Kipp made a motion earlier this year to have council meetings moved from Monday to Thursday nights. Now there is a problem. A BIG problem.
To review, the motion was:
- Move Council meetings to the 1st and 3rd Thursdays of each month.
- Move Committee of the Whole (COW) Meetings to the 2nd and 4th Thursday of each Month.
The problem is Shaw Cable CAN’T broadcast live on Thursdays because they have other programming obligations.
The proposed change is to have the COW meetings on Thursdays at 1pm.
Mr. Swabey, the City Manager has made the following recommendations, that COW meetings:
- be held in Board Room in the City Hall
- NOT be televised or recorded
- become “committee” meetings and no longer like “council” meetings
If this motion passes on Monday, January 19, 2015 it will be terrible for transparency and democracy in Nanaimo civic politics.
The committee of the whole meetings are very important for all Nanaimo residents to watch. They cover all new “hot” items. This is where people can reach out to the community and city hall when they are having problems. Everything must first go through the COW meetings. Some topics never make it to council meetings.
To rely on the minutes of the meetings is not good because these are not recorded verbatim, have little detail and are not always available.
If the COW meetings are moved to Thursdays at 1pm then who will be able to attend?
Why would the City Manager want to shut out the public? What is the City trying to hide?
These changes could come into effect early/mid March. It all depends on how Council votes on Monday.
Take Action now! Send an email to Mayor and council firstname.lastname@example.org and ask that they keep all meetings recorded and televised as they are now.