Maple Ridge Council workshops won’t be webcast

Maple Ridge is livestreaming its evening and committee meetings starting April but one councillor is wondering why council’s main meeting will not be broadcast.

Council’s workshop meetings take place twice a month on Monday mornings in the Blaney Room where staff and council talk around a table.

While the room will be fitted with audio equipment for recording sound, there won’t be any livestreaming of meetings in the near term, Maple Ridge Mayor Ernie Daykin said Friday.

That could lead to “potentially a whole bunch of other costs.”

Maple Ridge said last week that now that it has sufficient bandwidth, it can livestream its regular and committee meetings from council chambers at little cost.

However, for council workshop meetings, recordings will be available by request for staff or council reference purposes. They’ll also be posted on the district’s website, Daykin said.

Workshop meetings usually see more extensive debate and discussion than regular council meetings.

But Coun. Corisa Bell says workshop meetings should be livestreamed as well.

“Why is it so important to keep workshop private?” she asked.

Other cities can do this in 24 hours, why is the district waiting months? “You can buy a $300 computer screen and livestream through it. There’s no reason in my mind that it can’t already be happening.”

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