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TV cameras turned back on at Santa Rosa council meetings

By KEVIN McCALLUM
THE PRESS DEMOCRAT

Santa Rosa Mayor Ernesto Olivares has reversed the council’s policy of turning off TV cameras during public comments on issues not on the council meeting agenda.

Olivares said he supported the decision last year to move the comment period to the end of the meeting and turn off the cameras just before the public spoke because the council often had no authority over the comments raised.

Last week, Olivares said he supported keeping the comments at the end of the meeting, but said he was open to revisiting the issue of televising them.

After considering the matter further, Olivares said he had concluded that turning the cameras back on was best.

“I do really appreciate the concerns expressed by the members of the public about transparency and the need for open government here in Santa Rosa,” Olivares said.

Council members Gary Wysocky urged Olivares to consider moving public comment to 3:30 p.m. to give people a set time when they knew they could address the council, instead of waiting until the end of meetings that often run late into the evening.

“I think one of the fundamentals of democracy is being able to address your governing body,” Wysocky said.

Marsha Vas Dupre proposed 4:30 p.m. But Olivares resolved to keep the comments at the end of the meetings.

“At this point I’m comfortable with what we have in place,” he said.





3 Responses to “TV cameras turned back on at Santa Rosa council meetings”

  1. Kay Tokerud says:

    Good move, Mayor Olivares. The later time is better than having it at 3:30 because most people are working until 5:00. Yes, they may have to sit through other agenda items but that’s not a bad thing as they will learn about what’s going on in City Government. I would hope that in some cases you will use your discretion to take public comments on non-agenda items before the end of very long meetings but in any event you brought back some integrity to the City Council. Way to go!

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  2. Liz (Elizabeth Gatley) says:

    Yes Thank You Mayor Olivares.

    It’s a start to getting the citizens more involved in their government.

    And for those who don’t care to listen to the crazy people ( i totally understand it is hard to take sometimes) you can just turn off your tv/internet or leave the council chambers.

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  3. RICHARD says:

    Thank you.

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