Follow-up Email to Counsellors

There seems to be some misunderstanding about the question asked by the CTA. For your convenience, we have included the question again below:

Informed constituents are essential for a working democracy. During the last election all candidates supported improved accessibility and transparency.

Council meetings are currently televised on Cogeco. This does nothing to improve meeting accessibility for those who don’t have Cogeco or must work at meeting times. If the Committee of the Whole meetings move to 4 pm, as proposed, this will make access even more difficult for those who work. Live Streaming is an expensive option and will not improve accessibility since it must be viewed when the meeting occurs.

Hamilton Township has implemented video recording and posting on YouTube. This solution costs less than $1000 for equipment and allows access at any time by any Internet connected computer without additional costs.

Do you support having recorded sessions available on YouTube? If not please briefly explain the reasons for your opposition.
Please respond by December 18, 2015.

The CTA does not support “broadcasting” of council meeting and activities and committee of the whole meetings.

We understand “broadcasting” to mean transmission of council live and in real time via Cogeco (currently) or via the Internet (possible future situation).

We believe this method to be less effective, less accessible and more costly than the alternative of “video recording” and later playback. We take “”video recording” to mean recording of council for the purpose of posting it on a website (the town’s own and/or You Tube) where viewers can view at their leisure.

Broadcasting is not accessible because it requires people to:

  1. Have a TV and pay a monthly fee to subscribe to Cogeco cable
  2. Be available to watch at the time the event is happening

Video recording is a better and more accessible option because:

  1. It is available to anyone who can access the internet at home, in a coffee shop, at a friend’s or relatives or at the library
  2. It does not require a paid subscription to Cogeco cable
  3. It can be watched at the viewer’s convenience
  4. It can be available almost immediately for about $1,000 in equipment purchased
  5. It can easily be incorporated into the town’s new web site

The CTA has a copy of the PowerPoint presentation presented by the Citizens Council Hamilton Township to their council. We would be happy to present it at a delegation to Cobourg council. Perhaps, this Monday the 21st would be a good time since governance is being discussed? Please advise if you would like us to do this.

A reminder to those councillors who have not replied that we will post “No reply” on our web site if we do not hear from you by Dec. 18th. A “Thank you” to those who have responded. If you choose to re-send a clarification to your previous email, please do so and we will publish your updated reply.

Thank you.

The Cobourg Taxpayers Association