by Dave Preston
Peachland council is looking at taking a big leap into the 21st century by making videos of council meetings available online and by making updated technology available to council members.
Mayor Keith Fielding said Tuesday he, two councillors and a senior manager took a trip to Salmon Arm to see that town’s set up for streaming council meetings on the Web.
Fielding said he was impressed with the set up and Salmon Arm’s IT person will be advising Peachland as to how it can have web videos of meetings in an inexpensive way.
The Peachland visitors to Salmon Arm also learned that town has a unique answer to elected officials and technology, In Salmon Arm, council members are given $1,000 to purchase whatever communications devices they want.
The $1,000 grant is given once per term, equating to about $333 per year during a three-year council term.
Coun. Peter Schierbeck showed up at Tuesday’s Committee of the Whole Meeting with his own laptop. He said had the agenda open on the laptop and was able to type notes to the side of any page and he liked the system.
Council agreed in principle Tuesday to allow each council member to spend $1,000 per term for electronic devices, such as laptops or tablets.
A final decision won’t be made on the two initiatives until the 2012 financial plan has been finalized.