City councillors voted unanimously in favour of allowing electronic attendance at civic meetings going forward. The matter came before councillors at yesterday’s general purposes committee meeting.
“The current bylaw amendment will enable council members to participate remotely if they are unable to (attend in-person),” said city clerk Claudia Jesson. “The current meeting format of electronic meetings and participation does extend to Sept. 28, at which point this bylaw would kick in and allow members to attend electronically if they are unable to attend regular council meetings.”
Updated provincial legislation in the fall will allow electronic attendance going forward, but a city bylaw would bridge the gap between the end of the current provincial legislation and a possible update.
Coun. Andy Hobbs said he had some concerns about the lack of definition in the bylaw amendment, and believes people should only be able to attend electronically “on an exceptional basis.”
“My guess is that this is going to be further refined as things open up, and also we’ll have a bit more experience where it’s more or less discretionary,” said Mayor Malcolm Brodie.
Hannah Scott, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Richmond Sentinel