As a major step toward expanding the legislative transparency crucial to good government, Gardiner has obtained a $2,999 grant for the purchase of computer and camera equipment which will be used to videotape Town Board meetings and make them available on the web within 24 hours of their occurrence.
Unless there is a particularly volatile issue on the agenda, Town Board meetings are typically attended by a familiar and admirably intrepid 20 or fewer citizens—out of a population of over 5,500 residents.
If discussions of the issues we face are made easily available to the broadest possible public, it is our hope that this expanded accessibility will engage peoples’ energy, imagination, and sense of participation in the democratic process on a regular basis. Many constituents may more readily express their opinions about how we’re handling an issue—or suggest a totally new perspective on how to approach it, and this would benefit both the larger Gardiner community and the Town Board, as it works to govern productively on the community’s behalf.
Citizens who are unable to attend the meetings, or who want to review Town Board deliberations, will soon be able to download Town Board proceedings at a time convenient to their individual households. In the service of community-wide participatory democracy, our ultimate goal is to eventually provide live webcast with interactive options.
The Public Access grant (obtained with the help of Assemblyman Kevin Cahill) underwrites equipment only. We are now looking for a volunteer videographer who will record meetings and oversee uplinking them to the Net. Please contact me at the Town Hall offices (255-9675), or at firstname.lastname@example.org if you’re interested.
Town Board meetings begin at 7p.m., at the Gardiner Town Hall, on the first and second Tuesdays of every month (except July and August, when we meet on the second Tuesday only).
Join us. Gardiner needs YOU.