Mayor suggests change to meeting schedule
Friday 20 March, 2020
Tamworth Region Mayor Col Murray is asking fellow councillors to consider cutting the number of Ordinary Meetings in half for the next three months to reduce the possibility of exposure to COVID-19.
Cr Murray will propose the move in a Mayoral Minute to next Tuesday night’s meeting.
His recommendation is for meetings scheduled on 14 April, 12 May and 9 June to be cancelled “to limit the contact between Councillors, Council Executive and the public” to minimise the risk of exposure to the Coronavirus.
He also wants to encourage members of the public who are not speaking in the community consultation part of the meeting to watch the proceedings using the new live streaming of the meeting instead of attending in person.
“The COVID-19 pandemic is unprecedented and we all have the responsibility to take the necessary measures to slow its spread though our community,’’ he said. “What I am proposing is only sensible given the advice from health experts to avoid large gatherings.
“Council has ‘social distancing’ measures in place in the interest of reducing health risks for our community and our employees – this motion is part of that.
“It’s also a good opportunity for our community to make use of the new live streaming of our meetings and see democracy at work from the comfort of their own home.”
Under Section 365 of the Local Government Act 1993, Council has a legal requirement to o meet at least 10 times each year, each time in a different month. Unless the State Government changes this provision, Council must still hold one Meeting a month.
It is a requirement under Section 10 (1) of the Local Government Act 1993 for Ordinary Council Meetings to be open to the public. The recent launch of live streaming for Tamworth Regional Council meetings allows members of the community to observe without being there in person.
The link for each live stream will be posted on Council’s Facebook page shortly before the start of a meeting. After the meeting, broadcasts can be accessed through Council’s website at: www.tamworth.nsw.gov.au/streaming