Denbighshire County Council is going all technological to encourage people to get involved in local democracy – by streaming a number of its full council and planning committee meetings live on the web.
The former Minister for Communications and Local Government wrote to all authorities indicating that the Welsh Government was making £1.2 million available by way of grants to to assist them in, amongst other things, implementing the webcasting of council meetings with the aim of strengthening and modernising local democratic arrangements.
The webcasting of meetings involves the live streaming of sound and images of proceedings.
The webcast can also be made available on the council’s website as archived material. This means that members of the public who are not able to attend meetings may either view them live online or at a later time or date via the online archive.
The council intends to webcast approximately 60 hours a year of meetings held in the council chamber in County Hall using fixed camera and delegate technology.
Councillor Barbara Smith, Cabinet Lead Member for Modernisation, said: “We are delighted to offer this new service, as webcasting will enable the public to view the meetings without leaving their homes, via mobile and social media.
“It’s a great way of engaging the public in local democracy and in the work of the council. Councillors have already received a demonstration on how webcasting works and they have supported the proposal. We are now encouraging the public to get interactive and watch our council meetings at their convenience."
A date for the first webcast meeting is yet to be chosen but could be as early as next month.