Langley City Councillor Gayle Martin is questioning just how many people will sit at their computers to watch webstreamed City council meetings.
The City is in the midst of a technology blitz, having recently redesigned its website and creating wifi hot spots around the downtown core. At the July 9 council meeting, staff unveiled the City's Twitter, Facebook and YouTube presence.
As part of next year's financial plan, the City is also looking at spending about $17,000 for video equipment which would allow council meetings to be broadcast. Martin noted that the system comes with an $820 annual maintenance cost.
"I quite frankly don't think people are going to sit at home and watch," she said.
She said the City should not spend that money on the equipment since Shaw already broadcasts every second council meeting.
Martin suggested using the social media just unveiled to poll residents about whether they want webstreaming.
Shaw has told the municipality it won't be replacing its aging TV cameras when they no longer work, noted Mayor Peter Fassbender.
He said most municipalities have purchased their own equipment and provide the feed for Shaw's community channel.
"We've talked about this for many years," he said.
Martin noted that the City is facing increased costs that must be factored in, such as the extra staffing needed now that there is a ban on cosmetic pesticides and an additional $10,000 to paint the doors and trim of the firehall ($20,000 is already in the budget for the $30,000 project).
Her request to have it removed from the financial plan was not approved by the rest of council. The financial plan will receive final approval at an upcoming council meeting, likely July 23. Council then breaks for August and resumes Sept. 10.
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