Peter Bernard - 28 March 2017
Peter Bernard made comments regarding the Live Streaming of Council Meetings at the Ordinary Council Meeting 28 March 2017.
Through you Madam Mayor to all councillors
It has been general practice in the past to live stream all agenda items and not non- agenda item. The result of this is the stiflingl'9ebate and supress other issues being raised. This prevents the wider public being made aware of issues other than what the bureaucracy wishes you to hear. It is an insult to our democratic system for this council to allow the practice to continue. It encourages the consolidation of a system where democratically elected persons become divorced from the citizens they were elected to represent. Live streaming is an excellent idea and its extension to cover issues that really matter to ratepayer must be introduced. It will bring the bureaucracy closer to the people that pay their wages which, in most cases, is far more than most people are struggling to live on.
Councillors you only have to look at the agenda to day Over 200 pages, much of it "gobbly gook ", designed to numb your brain and prevent you from raising issues that are closer to the people. If you want to get closer to the issues that exist out there you must open the doors to democracy. Councillors I am personally encouraged by the new faces on this council and are seeing all of these showing a degree of independence by moving motions of their own making. Madam Mayor allowing live streaming of non- agenda items will encourage others to attend and lay the foundation for greater transparency. Madam Mayor If you become the leader of the push and move along this path as you have done on other issues it will be a major advancement for citizen rights. I make a solemn promise to keep away, but not necessarily quiet, if you encourage this bold step.
Peter Bernard 28-3-2017
With regards to your comments on non-agenda (public access) presentations, responses are published on Council’s website at www.esc.nsw.gov.au/inside-council/council/meetings/information/public-access-session so the public can review any issues raised.
Public access sessions prior to any council meetings are not part of the official Council meeting and as such, are not covered by Council’s Code of Meeting Practice. This means Council has no jurisdiction over the speaker regarding what is being spoken about. The Live streaming of public access sessions could exacerbate any liable or slanderous comments made by the speaker and its inclusion is not supported