I support any initiative that would allow councillors to conference (video / audio) into meetings. The same broadcast system upgrade needed in council chambers (so they are not reliant on Rogers to show up and operate their equipment) could be easily leveraged to allow councillors to participate and the public to be present by telepresence and participate without being in the room.
The same system would be used to webcast and record ALL meetings for maximum transparency. Skype and other such applications are mature and make for maximum accessibility.
In the Ontario Public Service and boardrooms across the globe, great efficiencies, improved attendance, collaboration and cost savings have been realized by the extensive use of video conferencing and teleconferencing. I’d like to see it explored.
These changes are long overdue. It was painful to watch Scott move the webcam from one person to another during his short tenure. We can do better for our councillors and our community.