NEWS/ CITY HALL — Kamloops City council will take another step into the digital age Tuesday if it approves electronic participation in meetings.
Last July, during a controversial debate over a shortage of quorums at Heritage Commission meetings, council was asked to consider letting commission members take part in meetings by telephone or video conferencing.
A staff report coming back to council Tuesday cautions about potential issues with the practice but says most other municipalities surveyed allow electronic attendance at meetings.
It says some City meeting rooms would be able to accommodate the technology but not all. Some could accommodate audio only, while others could be used with both audio and visual.
Staff also recommends that electronic attendance not be allowed at in-camera meetings because confidentiality can’t be guaranteed. The report also suggests limiting the number of members who can take part in any one meeting by electronic means.
And, any costs associated with sitting in on a meeting via laptop, cellphone or other electronic means would be the responsibility of the member.
The report doesn’t take a position on the issue, recommending only that council either approve electronic attendance, or simply receive the report for information.
Councillors began a pilot project using iPads for their meeting agendas a year ago and have since adopted the method for all council members.