Streaming the Legislature

To The Editor:
I traveled with a few neighbors from Pulaski to Oswego on November 14 to speak at the County Legislature meeting regarding the issue of rural transportation.

After that experience, I have a couple of thoughts and a recommendation for our legislature.

The first fact is: why does the public have to wait until the end of the session to speak?

In our case, before anyone in the audience could speak, the legislators went into executive session and so it meant additional wait time.

For the public to travel to Oswego at 2 o’clock in the middle of the day and then put them last on the agenda is a barrier for engaging the public in our government.

The second fact is: that most of the time, the Legislators do not use their microphones when speaking, particularly when they were facing the front of the room.

It was very difficult if not impossible to hear them

Now for my recommendation: stream the meetings of the Legislature would be the most modern, convenient and professional things for the Legislature to do.

For example. after reading the November 14, 2019 article in the Oswego County Today entitled, County Government Launches a New Website, I started remembering about how years ago when cable companies first negotiated cable service in our municipalities, Oswego County had a public access channel where I could turn on my television in Central Square once a month, in the early evening, and actually watch the taped county legislative meetings.

While attending the county meeting on November 14, I noticed that a man was standing up towards the front of the room on a raised platform with a recording camera.

As stated in the Oswego County Today article on November 14, the new county website will “offer better access to government services and flexibility in providing information to the user.”

The legislature approved a contract with Revize, a Michigan-based software development firm that specializes in developing government sites in 2018.

In the article, the county says, “we approach the new site as a web solution rather than simply a website.

Streaming, unlike conventional recording, would allow the county not only to record the meeting but then place it on the website where anyone could at any time have access to it.

As we know, quite a few families today are cutting the cable cord because of the expense.

However, streaming has become the wave of the future.

This also becomes a wonderful tool to enhance the civic education of our students as well as county residents in how government works.

Martha Marshall

3 Comments

  1. Martha, There is an opportunity for the public to speak at the beginning of the meeting. If you had approached me I would have told you which paper to sign up to speak on. We spoke for a brief while after you had spoken. I agree very much with your points about transportation in rural Oswego county. As far as streaming you have been able to view the legislative meeting for almost a year now on Utube, by typing in Oswego County Legislature in the search bar and you can see not only the Full legislative meetings but all the Committee meetings. Now the fact that this info hasn’t been announced to the public is very sad I agree. Next time you come to the meetings I won’t be there but if you approach the Minority Leader or the Majority leader they will or should help you so your voice can be heard at the appropriate time. Speaking at the start of the meeting is for issues about any and all resolutions of the day. Which your issue could have been brought forward. There was a resolution pertaining to transportation in rural Oswego county. Good luck with getting better transportation in Rural areas. I have been talking in support of that for six years.

  2. thank you for sharing the information regarding u tube. wow. who knew? we do now. Also, we did sign in before the start of the meeting. Yes, the lack of transportation in the north eastern part of Oswego County impacts all aspects of life.

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